What is a Disaster?

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Introduction Disaster has been defined as “A natural or human-caused event, occurring with or without warming, causing or threatening death, injury or disease, damage to property, infrastructure or the environment, which exceeds the ability of the affected society to cope using only its own resources”. The word to remember here is “without Warning”. This makes it a task, a management issue. Although most disasters are a cause, a natural phenomena which is not within human power to control but in the present age it is felt that humanity because of its scientific and technological advancement should be able to handle it in a better manner. The oldest listed disaster is the flood of Noah, a divine intervention, in which humanity was told how to save itself; by building a boat. A management methodology was also enunciated. However, numerous other disasters which have taken place in history and the loss that they caused was due to the very vulnerable nature of the Homo Sapiens. This vulnerability of humanity should have decreased to a greater degree due to increasing knowledge, capacity and capability to handle such occurrences, however, natural disasters seem to be amplified in terms of their repeated occurrence and effect on economy. This increase may be in part due to the expanding knowledge and availability of information but also the increasing misuse of nature ie global warming and climate change are due to human endeavours: leading to more disasters and increasing
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