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Introduction to Disasters

The Wikipedia defines the term disaster quite nicely:

"A disaster is a natural or man-made event that negatively affects life, property, livelihood or industry often resulting in permanent changes to human societies, ecosystems and environment."

 As the definition suggests, disasters are highly disruptive events that cause suffering, deprivation, hardship, injury and even death, as a result of direct injury, disease, the interruption of commerce and business, and the partial or total destruction of critical infrastructure such as homes, hospitals, and other buildings, roads, bridges, power lines, etc. Disasters can be caused by naturally occurring events, such as earthquakes, hurricanes, flooding, or tornadoes, or they can be due to man-made events, either accidental (such as an accidental toxic spill or nuclear power plant event), or deliberately caused (such as various terrorist bombings and poisonings).

Disasters — In The News
Health Tip: Create a Tornado Plan

(HealthDay News) -- Preparing the family for a tornado can help protect you and your loved ones during the unthinkable. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests: Create and discuss an emergency plan for where to go in your home if there is a tornado. Make sure... Read More

Hurricane Season Has Begun: Are You Ready?

THURSDAY, July 3, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- As Hurricane Arthur threatens the East Coast of the United States, people are getting an important reminder about safety preparations they need to make for hurricane season. Power outages and flooding are common when a hurricane strikes and could put your food supplies... Read More

Japan Quake Shows How Stress Alters the Brain

TUESDAY, April 29, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A small study of people who experienced the devastating 2011 earthquake in Japan shows that although traumatic events can shrink parts of the brain, some of those regions can rebound once a person's self-esteem returns. "Higher self-esteem is one of the most important... Read More

Weblog Entries
A Sense Of Place: Helping Victims Of Natural Disasters

My heart goes out to everyone in Oklahoma and beyond that was affected by the horrendous tornado that swept through the region on Monday, May 20, 2013. The loss of... Read More

Want To Get Tougher In Life? Be Vulnerable.

Unfortunately, we are in the throws of a national disaster. Hurricane Sandy’s path of destruction is behind us, but ahead there is so much devastation to address. These are... Read More

What Are The Psychological Consequences Of Surviving A Disaster?

Each day television images show us the devastating tragedy resulting from the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. It is emotionally wrenching to watch this tragedy unfold as the numbers of... Read More


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