After the landslide that buried and killed nine civil firefighters in the Duas Bocas grotto the city of in the interior of São Paulo decided to prohibit access to the interior of all 19 existing caves in the municipality The measure was based on a report from the IPT Institute for Technological Research showing that the structure of the cave that collapsed had cracks and leaks.
Experts recommended temporary interdiction until this and other caves in the region had undergone a risk assessment for landslides.
The accident took place in the early morning hours of October 31 when 28 civil firefighters were participating in training in cave rescue techniques.
After the collapse experts from the IPT and the IPA Institute for Environmental Research inspected the site and issued a report recommending the temporary interdiction of the Duas Bocas cave and the carrying out of constant and systematic monitoring in the other existing caves in the region aiming to identify possible unstable areas
On the 11th Mayor José Roberto Ferracin Marques PSD ordered the interdiction and asked the IPT a state agency for help in carrying out studies on the safety of the structures According to the mayor the owners of the land where the caves are located were notified to carry out the geological studies and the management plan on their own if they intend to allow access to the interior of the caves.
The decision provoked complaints from hotel owners and companies that explore tourism in the region On Saturday 13 the city allowed tourists to have access to the outside of the cave the most visited in the city According to the director of tourism André Moraes arriving at the mouth of the cave without entering the structure poses no risk The place was signposted with banners and signs.
According to Ferrão Vale das Grutas is the main tourist attraction in the city and the city will support owners of areas with caves who intend to make the management plan On this long weekend for the Republic holiday hotels and inns in the region were practically full.
Businessman Sebastião Abreu owner of Real Life a company that provided training for firefighters affected by the landslide said that the closure does not affect the activity The training in caves is carried out sporadically and occasionally to complement the techniques of forest rescue which are part of the courses curriculum he said.
The Dois Bocas Grotto where nine civil firefighters died from the collapse of the structure a tenth victim was rescued alive from the rubble and survived is a rock formation formed by sandstone
Unlike caves formed by limestone rocks such as those in Vale do Ribeira sandstone caves are more subject to erosion by water infiltration being more unstable Duas Bocas is next to the Gruta do much sought after by tourists due to the surrounding waterfalls but it is less visited due to the difficulty of access.
The Great Writer and The Passionate Poet As Well, He Graduated from University Of Florida in Journalism and Brad have around 12 years of experience in news and media section.