The mayor of Lisbon clarified this Tuesday that the city’s “excellent preparation” for seismic risk has to do with the civil protection teams, firefighters and engineers that the Portuguese capital has to respond to disasters.
“With regard to earthquakes, my statement has to do with the excellent preparation of our team of protection civil service, the excellent preparation of our firefighters and the excellent preparation of our engineers”, said Carlos Moedas (PSD), after being questioned at the meeting of the Municipal Assembly of Lisbon by the deputies of the PEV and the PAN about the statement he made about the seismic risk in the city.
On Wednesday, the mayor of Lisbon said that the Portuguese capital is “extremely prepared” for the possibility of an earthquake like the one that happened on Monday in Turkey and Syria, including a warning system of tsunami.
“I would like to leave here some reassurance about the preparation that Lisbon has in relation to potential earthquakes, and we all know that we live in an area of the country where these earthquakes can happen. As a civil engineer and as someone who has worked in this area, our city is extremely prepared after the 1980s, unfortunately not in the oldest neighborhoods, but very, very prepared in terms of engineering and construction”, declared Carlos Moedas (PSD), on Wednesday, at a decentralized public meeting of the chamber.
This Tuesday, at the assembly meeting, the PSD mayor sought to clarify his statements, considering that “often they are completely taken out of context”.
“My statements had to do with very simple points about our preparation and which I reiterate: we have the best firefighter regiments in the world and it’s proven, and proven, and I leave here a tribute to what they’re doing in Syria and in Turkey. We have a protection exemplary civilian life and what we experienced in the floods allows me to say that we are very well prepared”, he pointed out.
As a civil engineer, Carlos Moedas underlined that his experience allows him to state that construction in new areas of the city is “fully prepared”, reinforcing that there are “excellent seismic engineers” in the country.
“The situation of our seismic engineering, our regulations in terms of seismic engineering, is not comparable with what is happening, for example, in Turkey or Syria, and, in that sense, we are very well prepared. a catastrophe, it is a catastrophe, and that we have to be always preparing”, stressed the mayor.
The municipality of Lisbon has already distributed more than 1000 “kits” in schools and has a municipal program to promote the seismic resilience of the private and municipal building stock and municipal urban infrastructure, called ReSist.
“We have excellent services, we have excellent preparation, but it is continuous work”, noted the mayor, adding that in the city center, namely in the historic areas, “there is not enough seismic engineering”, because they are very old buildings.
The Councilor for Urbanism, Joana Almeida (independently elected by the “Novos Tempos” coalition – PSD/CDS-PP/MPT/PPM/Aliança), revealed that the reports of seismic vulnerability of the buildings “will start to be delivered upon approval by the architecture”, as a risk prevention measure, indicating that the council together with Instituto Superior Técnico (IST) is carrying out a study with the analysis of 100 buildings, namely 50 dwellings and 50 public facilities, from different construction periods, to have results from June.
“From there, draw conclusions about the vulnerability of buildings depending on their construction times and quality of materials”, said the councilor for Urbanism, stating that “all buildings built before 1958 have, from the outset, a greater seismic vulnerability than buildings with other newer building materials”.
As part of the ReSist programme, resilience sheets for buildings in Lisbon are being prepared internally. The chamber is also developing with IST a matrix for evaluating the seismic resistance of buildings, whose information will form part of the resilience sheets. In addition, a map of the vulnerability of the city’s buildings is being prepared with IST, training for 100 technicians and inspection of 100 municipal buildings.