3.5 A New Approximation to Assess Risk By Lightning in Colombia

Tuesday, 8 January 2019: 11:15 AM
North 225AB (Phoenix Convention Center - West and North Buildings)
Audrey Soley Cruz Bernal, Keraunos S.A.S, Bogotá, D.C., Colombia; and D. Aranguren, H. Torres, and H. Rojas

Due to its location in the tropical terrestrial zone, the Intertropical Confluence Zone (ITCZ) influences the Colombian territory meteorologically. The ITCZ is formed when warm and wet winds of the latitudes to north and south of equator clash forming a cloud belt around the tropical region generating thus low pressures and storms. The displacement of the ITCZ cause that in the Colombian Andean region is presented, during the year, a bimodal behavior (March - April and October - November) of lightning activity, while in the Caribbean region a behavior monomodal (June - August) [1]. In the last decade the lightning in Colombia has been study spatial and temporary variations [2], [3] allowing to have the certainty that lightning activity and its negative consequences like deaths, damages in electric and electronic systems tend to be higher by its geographic location.

In the last years the lightning research in Colombian have focused to evaluate risk and quantify deaths by lightning in the territory [4], [5]. These studies recollected the statistics of deaths by lightning in different information source like DANE (Departamento Administrativo Nacional de Estadísticas), DIPSE (Dirección de Preservación de la Integridad y Seguridad del Ejército) y and media. According to these studies and taking into account the information of the detection and location lightning network LINET and PreThor installed six years ago in the country [2], [6] a first approximation of risk by lightning for Colombia territory will be submitted in this paper. For this reason, the LINET network will allow to analyze completely some lightning parameters that will be include in evaluation of risk by lightning.

As per the United Nation Organization risk is the product of the occurrence probability of a hazard by the vulnerability and by the exposure. Therefore, is the possibility that a territory and the society who its inhabit could be seen affected. Risk can affected an individual (individual risk) or to affect a person group (social risk). Exist different risk types like physical, chemical, biological, ergonomic, mechanical, psychosocial and environmental; these it can be measure quantitatively and qualitatively. This way, the lightning phenomena its find within environmental risk type and within this is find the natural risk.

In the risk concept three risk factors to be evaluated are find: dangerousness, exposure and vulnerability. These factors are defined like phenomena, features and human actions do that a determined fact have a major probability to occur. According to dangerousness factor three factors it will be considered: event distribution, return time and degree of dangerousness; those factors were associated with some lightning parameters. Being that way, the lightning parameters to evaluate in this work are Ground Flash Density (GFD), Keraunic Level and Severe Storms that will be associated with event distribution, return time and degree of dangerousness, respectively.

For the other factors risk vulnerability and exposure the events occurred of deaths by lightning according to the statistics recorded by DANE will be take into account. Vulnerability is defined as the proportion with relation to total exposed of the human victims or economic losses caused by an event and exposure is defined as total number of persons or total quantity of material goods that can see affected by an event. Therefore, collecting this information a new approximation to assess risk by lightning in Colombia it will be given.


[1] H. Torres-Sánchez, El Rayo, Mitos, Leyendas, Ciencia y Tecnología. Bogotá D.C., 2002.

[2] H. Torres S, E. Perez, C. Younes, D. Aranguren, J. Montaña, and J. Herrera, “Contribution to Lightning Parameters Study Based on Some American Tropical Regions Observations,” IEEE J. Sel. Top. Appl. Earth Obs. Remote Sens., vol. 8, no. 8, pp. 4086 – 4093, 2015.

[3] H. Torres S, “Variation of lightning parameter magnitudes within space and time,” Int. Conf. Light. Prot. ICLP 1998, 1998.

[4] N. Navarrete Aldana, M. A. Cooper, and R. L. Holle, “Lightning fatalities in Colombia from 2000 to 2009,” in International Conference on Lightning Protection (ICLP 2014), 2014, pp. 40–46.

[5] C. A. Cruz Mosquera, “Evaluación del Riesgo por Rayos Incluyendo un Sistema de Alarma de Tormentas ( SAT ) en Colombia,” Universidad Nacional de Colombia, 2015.

[6] D. Aranguren, J. López, J. Inampués, H. Torres, and H. Betz, “Cloud-to-ground lightning activity in Colombia and the influence of topography,” Cloud-to-gr. Light. Act. Colomb. Influ. Topogr., vol. 154, pp. 182 – 189, 2017.

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