What a Disaster!

Disasters cause human, material, economic, and environmental loss. History reveals the havoc and desolation caused by disasters throughout the world. The two major types of disasters are natural and man-made (either accidental or intentional). Are you ready for the next disaster?


What are the four types of disasters?

Four types of natural disasters include:

  1. Geophysical - earthquakes, volcanoes, landslides, and tsunamis

  2. Hydrological - floods and avalanches

  3. Climatological - extreme hot and cold temperatures, wildfires, and drought

  4. Meteorological - storms including hurricanes, cyclones, hurricanes, and wave surges


What are 5 man made disasters?

Humanity can be quite foolish and occasionally make tremendous mistakes that impact the earth and its population. Besides wars, there have been many man-made disasters that were very devastating around the globe throughout history. The following disasters were very notable for their magnitude, expense, and the number of people killed.

  • The Bhopal Gas Leak occurred in India as recently as 1984. The Union Carbide India Limited chemical plant had broken dozens of safety regulations and was in deplorable condition. As the errors accumulated, a safety release system activated and emptied a storage tank into the air, and 30 metric tons of toxic methyl isocyanate escaped into the atmosphere. It officially killed 3,787 people in Bhopal and neighboring areas. The unofficial death toll was estimated at 8,000 deaths.

  • The Jilin Chemical Explosion occurred in November of 2005 at a petrochemical plant in China. It resulted from poor handling of operating systems, which led to blasts shattering windows up to 200 meters away. Thousands were evacuated, dozens injured, and six people died. Benzene and nitrobenzene escaped into the environment. Toxic sludge covered the Songhua and Amur Rivers, which caused immune system impairments and leukemia. The explosion cut off water supplies, and many more people died as a result.

  • The Tennessee Coal Ash Spill happened in 2008 and resulted from poor management resulting in costing an estimated 675 million dollars of damage.

  • The Gulf War Spill still impacts the environment from Iraq’s attempt to thwart the advance of U.S. forces to land in their territory. Seven hundred twenty thousand cubic meters of oil into the Persian Gulf. Many local species of marine wildlife disappeared.

  • The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill occurred in 2010 when the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded and sank in the sea. It left the drill hole open and resulted in petrol blowing directly into the waters. It discharged 780,000 cubic meters of oil into the Gulf of Mexico and claimed seven lives. It took more than two months for the U.S. to cap the hole.