Today marks the anniversary of the earthquakes of 1985 and 2017, which impacted the center of the country; but, at the state level there are also vestiges of large earthquakes
The tragedies that occurred on September 19, 1985, and 2017 in Mexico City due to the earthquakes, have forever marked the entire country, even as a result of this a culture of civil protection has been created, to avoid the greatest amount possible deaths.
However, although in Sonora it may seem that these accidents are far from any possibility, the reality is that several earthquakes occur annually, although of much lower intensity.
During 2020 there have been nine earthquakes in the State of Sonora, between 3 and 4 degrees on the Richter scale, two in Cananea, three in Magdalena, three in Santa Ana, and one in Nacozari de García. The last one was on August 8 in Cananea, with an intensity of 3.5 degrees.
Ricardo Vázquez Aguayo, dispatch manager of the State Civil Protection Coordination (CEPC), explained that in Sonora there is no direct seismic zone, but there are some effects due to the Baja California Peninsula, as well as the Arizpe fault.
“Sonora as a seismic zone we do not directly have, but we do have the collateral impact due to the situation in Baja California and the Arizpe fault, which is in Sinoquipe, but they are of less intensity when the epicenter is large or high in Baja California or in the Sea of Cortez, there it does affect us a bit and it is felt ”, he explained.
The last earthquake in the entity that physically affected, despite not being the last that has occurred, also occurred in the year of 2017 and caused several effects in some municipalities in the South of the State.
“The 2017 one did affect Sonora, in Obregón, Álamos, in Navojoa, in that part of the South, which had not been felt. That of 2017 has been one of the most affected in recent years, in educational infrastructure, drinking water, drainage, some collapsed situations, the State did suffer damage in some municipalities “, he stressed.
On that occasion there were no human losses to regret, he said, nor were people injured, but there were economic damages, due to the damage to various infrastructure in municipalities in the south of the state.
“Thank God we did not have a loss of life or injured people, but we did have ruptures in the communication lines, we had to paralyze some parts, and there we were, in fact, we were with the Governor in Obregón and we had an event in Álamos and we had to move all those situations, “he said.
On that occasion, analysis of structures of old buildings in the city of Álamos, in schools in Obregón, had to be made, among other details that had to be reviewed.
Yes, people have died from earthquakes in Sonora
Although earthquakes of a considerable degree are not so common in Sonora, some have already occurred, the most serious occurred in Bavispe, on May 3, 1887, which reached 7.2 degrees on the Richter scale, which caused the death of 44 people during the earthquake and subsequent physical damage.
The last earthquake of considerable degree that has occurred in any Municipality of Sonora, occurred in 1945 in the port of Guaymas, which reached a scale of 6.8 degrees.
Important prevention and be prepared
The civil protection expert recalled that it is important to do drills and to be prepared so that in the event of an accident of this type, it can be presented.
However, this 2020 due to the current contingency for Covid-19, the drill will not be carried out physically as every year is done on September 19, but it will be virtually, but until the 25 of the same month.
“This year the mega simiulation was suspended due to the issue of the pandemic, we are going to make it virtual on September 25, right now we have the commemoration of Civil Protection Week, on Thursday we start with the National Civil Protection Week,” he reiterated.
Courtesy Joaquin Montaño
In the State they have collaboration agreements with companies, educational entities, civil society organizations, thanks to which workshops, exhibitions, and virtual or cabinet simulations will be held.
He recalled that the objective of the drills is to assess the preparation that one has, however, it is the moment where errors can jump so that they do not occur in a real situation.
“In all the evaluations the idea is that they go wrong, so that the bad comes out there and is corrected, the good thing about the drills is to take corrective actions and immediately correct what went wrong,” he emphasized.
Among the situations that have gone wrong during the drills are problems with stretchers, lack of any security element, lack of training of personnel, but these critical points are immediately reinforced.