Forensic geology is useful for solving legal issues related to calamitous events that cause damage to public safety, such as hydrogeological instability, where they have been caused by human activities or when the actions of foreseeability, risk mitigation, emergency management and its overcoming have not been carried out by the bodies of the National Civil Protection System, following the current legislation.
To highlight any responsibilities in terms of negligence, imprudence, inexperience and non-implementation of the precautionary rules suitable for protecting public safety, it is essential to define, from a legislative point of view, what are the risk of calamitous events, the predictability and preventability of the risk and to contextualize them for each single case.
The risk is represented by the possibility that a natural phenomenon or induced by anthropogenic activities can cause harmful effects on the population, the housing and production settlements and the infrastructures, within a particular area and in a given period of time. To concretely evaluate a risk, it is not enough to know the danger, but it is also necessary to carefully estimate the exposed value, that is to say the assets present in the territory that may be involved by a calamitous event, and its vulnerability.
The work of a geologist must therefore require not only a legislative approach, but also studies of the hazard and risk and the analysis of all those active behaviors that caused the damage or omissive behaviors that could have mitigated the risk and, therefore, avoided crimes against public safety.