This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
TheStreet Open House

Peru's Capital Highly Vulnerable To Major Quake

The city's lone water-and-sewer utility can barely provide water to one-tenth of Lima in the best of times.

Another big concern: Lima has no emergency operations center and the radio networks of the police, firefighters and the Health Ministry, which runs city hospitals, use different frequencies, hindering effective communication.

Nearly half of the city's schools require a detailed evaluation to determine how to reinforce them against collapse, Sato said.

A recent media blitz, along with three nationwide quake-tsunami drills this year, helped raise consciousness. The city has spent more than $77 million for retention walls and concrete stairs to aid evacuation in hillside neighborhoods, Prado said, but much more is needed.

At the biggest risk, apart from tsunami-vulnerable Callao, are places like Nueva Rinconada.

A treeless moonscape in the southern hills, it is a haven for economic refugees who arrive daily from Peru's countryside and cobble together precarious homes on lots they scored into steep hillsides with pickaxes.

Engineers who have surveyed Nueva Rinconada call its upper reaches a death trap. Most residents understand this but say they have nowhere else to go.

Water arrives in tanker trucks at $1 per 200 liters (52 gallons) but is unsafe to drink unless boiled. There is no sanitation; people dig their own latrines. There are no streetlamps, and visibility is erased at night as Lima's bone-chilling fog settles into the hills.

Homes of wood, adobe and straw matting rest on piled-rock foundations that engineers say will crumble and rain down on people below in a major quake.

A recently built concrete retaining wall at the valley's head lies a block beneath the thin-walled wood home of Hilarion Lopez, a 55-year-old janitor and community leader. It might keep his house from sliding downhill, but boulders resting on uphill slopes could shake loose and crush him and his neighbors.

4 of 5

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

Jim Cramer's protégé, David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Dividend Stock Advisor

Jim Cramer's protégé, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!

Markets

DOW 17,164.95 -251.90 -1.45%
S&P 500 1,994.99 -26.26 -1.30%
NASDAQ 4,635.24 -48.1670 -1.03%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs