Disaster management

“ There is a portent of stormy weather ahead to which we had better give heed…No one knows when emergencies will strike…Set your houses in order. If you have paid your debts, if you have a reserve, even though it be small, then should storms howl about your head, you will have shelter for your wife and children and peace in your hearts. That’s all I have to say about it, but I wish to say it with all the emphasis of which I am capable. “
– Gordon B Hinkcley

Every nation should outline a plan beforehand in order to tackle disasters when they strike. These disasters may be either man-made or natural. These things involve the loss of life and property.

Some examples of disasters are:
• Chemical emergency – Under specific conditions, the chemicals used in our daily lives can become harmful to the human body. Even in the case of chemicals we come across in our daily lives, large quantities of them can be harmful. Exposure to chemicals usually occurs by breathing it in, consuming contaminated food, water, medicine or touching or coming in close proximity with toxic chemicals.
• Drought – A drought is characterised by a period of dryness long enough to cause harmful effects. Its severity depends n the degree of moisture in the air. Droughts are usually of four types – meteorological, agricultural, hydrological and socioeconomic.
• Earthquake – It is characterised by a sudden and rapid shaking of the earth which occurs due to the shifting of tectonic plates beneath the surface of the earth.
• Fire – Fires can be fought easily with the help of a working smoke alarm and an escape route that has been well practised. It can also be avoided using common workplace safety protocols that have been put in place in order to avoid such fires.
• Flood – Floods are the overflow of water to submerge land causing huge economic damages. It usually occurs after hurricanes. Flash floods are a specific type of flood that involves fast rising water levels and occurs only along a stream or low-lying areas.
• Flu – It is a contagious respiratory disease. Flu generally spreads from person to person through coughing or sneezing. The types of flus include seasonal, epidemic, swine and avian flu.
• Nuclear explosion – Nuclear explosions involve an intense amount of light and heat to be dispersed in addition to a damaging pressure wave and spreading of radioactive material, contaminating natural bodies. Nuclear fallout is the falling of minute radioactive debris from the atmosphere just after a nuclear explosion. Radiation is energy coming from a source that causes it to travel at the speed of light.

“ If you knew what I knew, you would pile it up in the middle of the floor, throw a cloth over it and walk around it!”
– Harold B. Lee
Proper measures are pertinent in order to cope with various disasters, be it natural or man-made. Safety precautions and guidelines must be laid out thoroughly beforehand in accordance with these disasters. Disaster prone areas should be notified beforehand. This can be done through education. The Government should take an initiative in this regard. Education can be given to young children in schools. Banners and hoardings can be put up. Advertisements can be played on the national television regarding disaster management. The news channels can be asked to promote proper disaster management and safety precautions that can be taken at home in order to avoid such occurrences. The only way that man can fight disasters is by spreading awareness about it.