Hydrogeological risk activities
Hydrogeological risk is one of the major risks afflicting Italy.
Calamities hitting the domestic territory have taught us that, to effectively protect the life of the people and keep the infrastructures in good condition, we must be able to foresee possible events in an area, identify possible damages and the actions to take before, during and after an emergency: this is precisely the reason why prediction and prevention have taken on increasing importance as compared to what happened in a not too distant past.
Prediction and prevention is based on increasingly close contacts between civil protection and the world of scientific research, with new technological systems for collecting and processing information and data processing centres capable of warning about the probability of a catastrophic event occurring with maximum possible notice, by preparing sophisticated and efficient risk maps, and promotion of normative and technical measures to prevent and mitigate damages.
In the hydrogeologycal risk, prevision activities help to understand expected phenomena, especially extreme meteorological events. To achieve this goal, we use tools and sophisticated techniques are used together: applied meteorology, satellite images, weather radars, hydraulic models, etc..
Prevention activities help to avoid or minimize the possible occurrence of damage due to a flood, a landslide etc. Prevention activities are thus designed to take measures designed to eliminate or mitigate the effects on the ground.
Prevention measures may be structural or non-structural. Structural interventions consist of active or passive arranging works, which aim to reduce the danger of the event, lowering the probability of occurrence or mitigating its impact. Examples of structural interventions are the banks, the rolling tanks , the hydraulic-forestry, consolidation of slopes, etc.. Non-structural measures consist of those actions aimed at reducing damages through the introduction of constraints that prevent or limit the urban expansion in areas at risk, emergency planning, the establishment of early warning systems and monitoring networks.
Prediction tools and monitoring networks allow to implement a warning and surveillance system able to activate well in advance the civil protection machine in case of a planned event whose estimated or measured intensity exceeds the predetermined threshold of criticality in the intensity. Exceeding these thresholds will lead to the implementation of activities under the emergency planning and, in particular, those for the safety of people.
A system of gathering centres is active on the Italian territory for collecting, monitoring and sharing of weather, hydrology and hydraulics data. The network of these centres is the National System for early warning and monitoring. The management of the national alert system is provided by the Civil Protection Department and the regions through the network of functional centres, regional structures and competence centers. Each Region shall establish procedures and methods of its own early warning system for civil protection at regional, provincial and municipal levels.