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The National Emergency Commission established a Green Alert in Guanacaste Province due to the risk that more thunderstorms could be formed in that zone.
- A.M. Costa Rica archive photo -

Published Tuesday, May 11, 2021

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff
On Monday, the National Emergency Commission established a Green Alert in Guanacaste Province due to the risk that more thunderstorms could be formed in that zone.

This warning is given when it is anticipated that a meteorological phenomenon endangers a specific area in the country. The authorities activate the community's emergency commissions to take action due to the danger related to the alert.

Meanwhile, the Yellow Alert was placed on the rest of the country. This status allows emergency committees of each community to prepare prevention protocols.

The commission encourages people in the country to take precautions in their homes, places of study or work. People must be attentive to the communication alerts that the commission provides. Rescuers must be prepared for the search or rescue of people and respond to emergency calls.

According to the weather report from the Meteorological Institute, the cause of the strong thunderstorms is the proximity of the Intertropical Convergence Zone, ICZ, to Costa Rica.

The ICZ, known by sailors as the doldrums or the calms due to the dull windless weather, is the area where the northeast and southeast trade winds converge. The zone appears as a band of clouds, usually, thunderstorms, which circles the globe near the equator.

Specialists forecast thunderstorms on the Guanacaste Province due to the high-pressure system that occurs in the Atlantic Ocean forming strong winds in the Caribbean Sea, with gusts of up to 67 kilometers per hour in the north of Guanacaste.

Gusts of variable intensity are expected in the regions of the North Pacific, the Central Valley mountain range and mountains of the country, with moderate to strong  intensities, maximum gusts between 60-85 kilometers per hour.

Specialists forecast that downpours and thunderstorms will continue in the Caribbean, amounts between 25 to 60 millimeters in periods of 3 to 6 hours. This rain will spread towards the Central Valley and the North Zone.
More thunderstorms are expected to continue affecting the country until Wednesday.

Due to the high risk of continuous rains and strong gusts of wind, specialists recommend that in order to avoid accidents, to consider the following advice:

» Keep the roof of your house clean.

» Clear a path in the backyard allowing rainwater to move without problems towards the drainage, which helps to avoid damages and leaks in the house.

» Pick up the garbage so that it does not fall on the pipes or drains on the sidewalks.

» Avoid solvents, oils, acids or corrosive liquids that can fall into the sewer pipes and deteriorate them.

» Organize the cleaning of public areas such as river banks in your community to avoid flooding.

» Report the lack of concrete caps or grids in the pipes to the Aqueduct Institute by calling 2547-6555.

» Stay informed about the alerts issued by the authorities.

» People living in mountain areas should increase precautionary measures against a possible landslide or material falling from the high areas of the hills.

» Have an emergency evacuation plan in the community, work and home.

» Drivers must increase precautions for heavy rain and fog.

» Take precautionary measures in case of thunderstorms.

» Be alert in vulnerable areas to flooding due to sewer saturation or increase of river flow.

» In case of a thunderstorm, take refuge in a safe place.

» In case of strong wind gusts, be alert to possible falling trees.

» In the event of a landslide, do not walk on the debris, stay away from affected areas, and do not return home until authorities verify that it is a safe place.

Authorities ask for the people in Costa Rica to call 911 to report any emergency such as flooding, fallen trees or landslides.

A.M. Costa Rica urges readers to share this alert with their contacts.

What emergencies have you heard of due to the thunderstorms in your community?  
We would like to know your thoughts on this story. Send your comments to

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