A natural disaster is defined as an event of nature that overwhelms local resources and threatens the functioning and safety of a community. Natural disasters are the result of natural phenomena that unleash processes that lead to physical damage and loss of human life and capital.
Natural disasters range from weather disasters such as droughts, floods, hurricanes and tornadoes to geological disasters such as earthquakes, volcanoes and tsunamis they are some examples of natural disasters. These disasters disturb the lives of communities and individuals and the economic activity of the affected region.
Classification of Natural Disasters
Natural disasters are caused by weather and geological forces. These are perhaps the most “unexpected” and costliest overall in terms of loss of human lives and resources.
Internal Earth processes
It covers geological phenomena caused by internal processes of the Earth. This includes earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions, etc., which humans generally cannot predict or prevent.
Earth's external processes
It includes phenomena like landslides, floods etc. These risks are avoidable and are often associated with man-made changes in the environment, such as deforestation or mining on hills and many more activities.
Hazards of Hydrometry
It is associated with changes in air and sea temperature. This risk is responsible for the formation of weather phenomena such as hurricanes and tornadoes, and sometimes precipitation and weather variations that lead to extreme floods, storm surges, droughts and other hydrological phenomena.
Biological disasters are caused by the spread of agents such as bacteria, viruses, and toxins that kill or incapacitate people, harm animals, crops, and damage the environment. These are the examples of biological hazards are cholera, dengue, yellow fever, Ebola virus and Marburg virus. The current pandemic situation due to the coronavirus is an example of biological hazards.
Types of Natural Disasters
An earthquake is a tremor or vibration of the earth. It can vary in size, As a result, some are very weak and they go unnoticed, But some are so powerful that they can even destroy an entire city. Earthquakes can cause ground disturbance, Moreover, it can cause landslides, avalanches and tsunamis. The epicentre of the earthquake often falls on the coast.
Landslides are the movement of large boulders or debris down a slope, as a result, landslides take place in mountains and hilly areas. Furthermore, landslides can cause destruction to man-made objects in many ways.
Avalanches are like landslides instead of rocks, a thousand tons of snow falls down the slope, Moreover, it can cause severe damage to anything or everything in its path. People living in snowy mountains are always afraid of it.
Tsunami are very high waves generated in oceans and seas. Furthermore, ground displacement causes most of these waves, it can cause flooding if it occurs near the coast. A tsunami consists of multiple waves. Moreover, these waves have a high current, so it reaches the coast in few minutes. The main danger of a tsunami is that a person who sees a tsunami cannot overcome it.
Causes of natural disasters
The release of energy causes seismic waves. The rupture of geological faults causes earthquakes other events like volcanic eruptions, landslides and mine explosions can also cause it. Volcanic eruptions, earthquakes can cause landslides. Besides, soil erosion due to deforestation also causes landslides.
consequences of Natural disaster
Disasters have huge human and financial costs. They can cause many deaths, severe injuries and food shortages. Most incidents of severe injuries and deaths occur during impacts, while disease outbreaks and food shortages often arise depending on the nature and duration of the disaster. Anticipating the potential effects of disasters helps determine actions that should be initiated before a disaster occurs to minimize its effects.
In case of disasters, rescue and relief operations such as evacuation, construction of shelter and relief camps, provision of water, food, clothing and medical assistance etc. should be done on an urgent basis. Post-disaster operations include rehabilitation and recovery of victims. The focus should be on capacity building to deal with future disasters, if any.
The effects of natural disasters include short-term loss of life and damage to property and long-term effects on the economic stability of a region or country.
Damage to infrastructure and energy generation centres will lead to adverse effects on the country's economic development. Recovery efforts, which include construction and reconstruction of facilities, help reverse the effects of disasters and provide employment to affected people.