A study on the hazards due to coastal floods due to sea penetrations will enable the evaluation of the risks and vulnerability in the nineteen villages in Cienfuegos province located in the shores of the Caribbean Sea.
The young physisist of the Center for Environmental Studies in Cienfuegos (spanish acronym CEAC), Lester Caravaca Colina, determined the influence of tides, surges and the strenght of winds in locations above the sea level, one of the causes of great economic losses during the hurricanes season.
“It stardted with the analysis of these variables: tides, surges and the effect of winds, their direction and strenght that moves volumes of water bringing about the so called surges which cause sea penetrations”, explains the researcher.
Calculations on depth, surge patterns established by his colleagues from CEAC, international scientific models, were used as basis to divide in sections the whole south coast as well as the 40 kilometers of interior seaboard of the bay around which 80% of the inhabited sector of the city is located.
Models were run in all cases and conditions (tropical storms, hurricanes categories 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5), the energy that wind gusts may put on water masses that could reach the coast.
“Benefits are evident. For example, if forecasts warn about the proximity of a category 3 hurricane, and its probable entrance by the south of the bay, we would know that based on the power of its wind gusts it would be striking the northern part of the harbour, thus, the industrial area in which are also located important population cores; so that the government and the Civil Defense Headquarters may be able to act and save lives and material resources”, assures the 29-year-old physisist.
To the natural parameters in each segment, the report adds possible economic losses, real state and electric net conditions as well as those of sewage systems and water supplies, social conditions, response capacity of the inhabitants to face the risks, in order to form a map of vulnerability in every zone and characterize potential risk and danger.
Result of 2 years of labor, the “Study of risk of coastal floods due to sea penetrations in Cienfuegos”, constitutes a tool commissioned by the Cuban government to the 14 provinces, which results in Cienfuegos won the Special Award due to social impact in the Technical Young Brigades (spanish acronym BTJ), organization that gathers all people under 35 years of age devoted to innovation and technological development.
The brief and its maps will now be in charge of the government in Cienfuegos and its similars in Abreus, Cumanayagua and Cienfuegos municipalities, places in which the coastal villages are located, to foster decision making in a province that has been affected by 10 tropical organisms (hurricanes, tropical storms, etc) in the last decade.