Disaster Case Analysis Essay Sample

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In the Tennessee Valley many major categories of disasters are experienced which include natural disasters and man-made and looking into the main difference between them it’s importance in increasing overall knowledge of occurrences, causes of each and ensuring that your preparedness is intensified. In addressing terms of catastrophic, critical, marginal, negligible, improbable, remote, occasional, probable, and frequent and should be simple and concise using numerical and non-numerical descriptions and create a matrix for easy referencing. The process should report the terms hazard, risk, and causal factor and how causal factor seems to confuse the analysis of hazards in a pyramid of “effect, mishap, hazard, causal factor” when the factor is simply another word for hazard. Hazards should be broken down to the level where you are able to apply mitigation. Severity or risk, what is an “acceptable risk” and is it based on history, personal experience, or public pressure or based on heightening risk with the constraints of “hazards” versus “failure conditions”. Improvement of information dissemination between responders and planners in the community and local government this can be accomplished by improving public understanding of the discipline, promoting and improving System Safety as a profession, promotion within jurisdictions and managing activities and objectives . Natural disasters are caused by natural phenomenon or acts of God.

The extent of loss is usually based on the level of information to the public, readiness of first responders and the cooperation between emergency management at the city, county and state level. As such, this can occur in areas susceptible to vulnerability. In retrospect, man-made disasters are directly influenced by humans from negligence, human error or direct malicious intent and include occurrences such as floods (wetlands, lower elevations with high rainfall amounts and co-location with a major dam). Activity occurs regularly as Tennessee has numerous bodies of water, low lands and flood plains. Below is a chart to show some disasters in the Tennessee Valley: |Disaster |Frequent |Often |Seldom |Preparedness | |Earthquakes | |X | |Safety location identification, radio, stored food and water, flashlights | | | | | |and escape plan | |Flooding |X | | |Radio, Escape plan and a rendezvous location identification, stored food and| | | | | |water, flashlights, blankets and full tank of fuel…Cell phones | |Wind Damage |X | |X |First aid kit, insurance and evacuation plan | |Sink Holes | |X | |Safety location identification, radio, stored food and water, flashlights | | | | | |and escape plan | |Tornado activity |X | | |Radio, Escape plan and a rendezvous location identification, stored food and| | | | | |water, flashlights, blankets, evacuation plan and storm shelter…Cell phones

The past twenty or thirty years we have experienced sinkholes and millions of dollars spent to avert major infrastructure damage. Earthquakes are experienced along the New Madrid Seismic Zone, also called the New Madrid Fault Line, this is a major seismic zone and a productive source of “interpolate” earthquakes (earthquakes within a tectonic plate) in the southern and mid-western United States, stretching to the southwest from New Madrid, Missouri. The New Madrid fault system was directly responsible for the 1811–1812 New Madrid earthquakes and may have the potential to produce large earthquakes in the future. Since 1812 frequent smaller earthquakes have been recorded in the area. [1] Tornadoes are a major concern and cost lives, property and land structures in losses each year across the country and triggers for the possible severe weather outbreak usually caused by a large dip in the jet stream digging into the central U.S., drawing in cold, Arctic air from the north with very warm moist air is running out ahead of it.

It’s the transition zone between the cold and the warm where a volatile mix of air will set off the potentially violent storms. This type of weather report causes residents in and near the thunderstorm risk area to stay alert for possible severe weather watches and warnings. Tornadoes are violent by nature capable of destroying well-made structures, uprooting trees and hurling objects like missiles. A tornado is a violently rotating column of air extending from the base of a thunderstorm down to the ground. Intensities are classified on the Fujita Scale with ratings between F0 (weakest) to F5 (strongest). Although severe tornadoes are more common in the Plains States, tornadoes have been reported in every state. To alerts associated in tornado producing weather; Tornado Watch – Tornadoes possible in and near the watch area. Review and discuss your emergency plans, and check supplies and your safe room. Be ready to act quickly if a warning is issued or you suspect a tornado is approaching.

Tornado Warning – A tornado sighted or indicated by weather radar. Tornado warnings indicate imminent danger to life and property. Go immediately under ground to a basement, storm cellar or an interior room (closet, hallway or bathroom). Man-made disasters: These can be divided into different categories and they include technological hazards, sociological hazards and transportation hazards and these are generally caused within proximity of people and movement of equipment, supplies and supplies. Despite the difference of the two, they both can cause permanent damage if the right measures are not put in place to mitigate those incidents the need for disaster attentiveness for comprehensive preparedness and recovery plans go a long way to toward success in softening the effects both before and after of major and minor occurrences.

Sources provide useful resources are across all forms of city, county and state websites that mirror of given specifics for each demographical area of the country and many citizens continue to research and assist local first responders by being proactive and prepared. |Disaster |Freq |Often |Seldom |Preparedness | |Aviation | | |X |Follow directions of officials for public safety. | |Rail | | |X |Although rare, be aware of rail lines and possibility of derailment and unguarded | | | | | |crossings | |Automotive |X | | |First aid kit, , auto insurance attentive operation of vehicles and routes around | | | | | |possible congested areas | |Chemical spills | | |X |Safety location identification, radio, stored food and water, flashlights and escape | | | | | |plan/routes | |Forest Fires | |X | |Radio, Escape plan and a rendezvous location identification, stored food and water, | | | | | |flashlights, blankets, evacuation plan …Cell phones |

Man-made or anthropogenic disasters are a result of human intent, error or as a result of failed systems. These are broken into several categories and there are some that cause more unmistakable damage when compared to others. A perfect example is looking at man-made disasters in transportation, divided into sub-categories include aviation, rail, road and space among others and through investigation found as a result of neglect or ignorance and over the years, they have claimed several lives. Intended or inferred disaster in this category is nuclear bomb and it is often as a result of intent and the end results are even more catastrophic with a large percentage of those involved losing their lives or ending up with major defects or long term injuries. Others similarly as catastrophic include chemical spill, oil spill, arson and terrorism.

There are also some technological hazards which include power outages structural collapse, industrial hazards and fire. Acres of land can be destroyed and anything else that is in the wake of the fires path including homes, animals, lives and entire families. Over the years in many States fires have come to be as rampant man-made disasters; most caused by man directly or indirectly, these are also divided into categories such as bush fires, mine, wild and firestorms. One of the most famous man-made fires was the recent Colorado fire and destruction recorded in its wake of destroying many properties, homes, valuable and possessions and whole neighborhoods. For this reason it’s considered important to learn more about preparedness, readiness and most tactics used in reducing causality percentages and further magnification in impacts of the situation. The extent of damage caused by man-made disasters varies greatly and while this is the case, it is important to state that others have notably high costs when compared to others. This is especially true when it comes down to responding and recovering. When you carry out a basic search, you will come across several resources that highlight these costs and hence, this will give you a clearer glimpse of what damage is caused by such occurrences.

Additionally, there are different factors which influence the costs such as location. For instance, if this were to occur in densely populated but wealthy countries, the end result might prove to be huge. However, if the same were to occur in densely populated but poor countries, the after effect costs might prove to be lower and this is in part closely tied to insurance. The death toll caused by man-made disasters will also vary in accordance to geographical location, the poorer or remote counties are hardest hit when compared to the richer ones. Credence given to richer or more advanced counties with action plans, resources and trained personnel to adequately and proportionally respond with speed to calls of distress. Capability and personnel with proper safety measures needed via control or to project the assets to remote or austere locations over long distances effectively, safely and rapidly hands down void of intelligence or desire to assist, although, modern technology plays an essential part in the way countries respond and prepare for disasters. The causes of natural disasters only occur when hazards communities come face to face with a natural act and vulnerabilities are realized.

Learning more about natural disasters and phenomenon enables communities and their citizens at ease to grip calamities as disaster or multiple events as they occur. Of the most popular incidences include fires, tsunami, earthquakes, tornadoes and the floods. These are occurrences when the importance to illustrate these natural disasters in order to ensure that you understand the hazards, you are well organized and equipped. Blizzards, droughts, forest fires, health disasters and space disasters are just a disastrous and feared. Handling each of these occurrences correlates directly with the magnitude and how well people cope and rebound. Natural disasters commonly referred to as act of God are generally deemed unrelenting and must have preventative measures to ensure populace is organized which assists with hardships linked with the event and less challenging recover and rebound. Education tends to make certainties easier in managing. The estimation of risk in the Tennessee Valley is ideal for some and minimal for others and the threat of a Tornado and flooding (proximity to lakes and rivers) is high; while an aircraft crash is possible, it is highly improbable, regardless the public must remain vigilant to stay informed be aware of surroundings, events and weather patterns that could alter good order and discipline. In determining societal and economic (direct) effects and the indirect effects or costs show that 2011 followed three record-setting years where thunderstorms and tornadoes caused about $10 billion in annual damage on average.

Insurance costs have risen in areas that have been hit hard by weather disasters in recent years, this after a financial strain already exists in the country. Using information from insurers, state emergency-management centers and federal agencies; estimated spring storms in the Midwest and southeast occurring in the first week of April exceeded $2 billion, and that a similar storm in the same area a week later cost $2.25 billion. Acceptable risk and regulatory authorities reluctant to define a precise level of acceptable risk, show an overall lifetime risks in the order of regulatory applications of the acceptable risk concept. The level of risk assessment should establish benchmarks, such as the risk of being hit by lightning, to help interpret such small risks. Higher levels of risk might be tolerated in the presence of offsetting health or economic benefits, although, discriminations in the risks and benefits complicate the determination of an acceptable level of risk.

Development of effective risk reduction strategy: Focus on protective factors helps guard against risky behavior, which can alienate those who experience the problem. Perform data collection, evaluation, and feedback, specific roles and duties of all first responders, emergency centers, volunteers, and any other personnel clearly defined. Approaches to risk reduction or risk management that’s appropriate or proportionate to the communication. There is lot to take into consideration, depending on area; you should ask whether the strategy is appropriate for the age and maturity levels of people. The most effective risk reduction strategies employed early intervention and makes the best possible use of available resources (materials, staff hours, and so on). If it’s something your group or coalition will have a hard time affording in terms of money, materials, or times, then you’re probably better off trying to come up with something else or get resourced by local, city or county managers.


1- Ronald W. Perry Ph. D. and Michael K. Lindell, Ph. D., Wiley, HV 551.3.P46 2007. Emergency Planning and Hazard Mitigation

2 – Haddow, George D.; Introduction to emergency management/ George D. Haddow, Jane A. Bullock, Damon P. Cuppola – 4th ed.


1 – USGS; Mar 1, 2012 – http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/states/events/1811-1812.php [Online].

2 – “Doppler Dale” Thursday, May 5, 2011 http://www.dopplerdale.com/2011/05/13-tornadoes-confirmed-in-tennessee.html http://www.nssl.noaa.gov/edu/safety/ [Online]. 3 – Community Toolbox: Bill Berkowitz, Jerry Schultz, Phil Rabinowitz; http://ctb.ku.edu/en/tablecontents/sub_section_main_1161.aspx [Online].

4 –The Social Science Research Network Electronic Paper Collection; FM Global Risk Management; 2012 eNotes.com, http://www.enotes.com/acceptable-risk-reference [Online].

5 – Guidelines for Health Education and Risk Reduction Activities. Centers for Disease Control (1995). Core Elements of Health Education and Risk Reduction Activities. Guidelines for Health Education and Risk Reduction Activities [Online].

6- Social Science Research Network; 2012 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inchttp://ssrn.com/abstract=928869 [Online]

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