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Disaster Management

Tornadoes, Typhoons, Cyclones

These are winds of high-speed, many times accompanied by heavy rainfall. These cause structural damage, snapped overhead wires, and, possibility of floods.

Because of damage to structure and overhead wires, utility services could be disrupted. Heavy rainfall could cause flooding also.

Many times, these could last for a few days. In such cases, any restoration and relief activities can not even start till these few days when the activities start subsiding.

The only thing good about these kinds of natural disasters is that they can be predicted to a reasonable degree - thanks to the advancement of metrological sciences. And, in most cases, its possible to get a warning of up to several days. Usually, it is possible to take at least some preventive measures - during these few days of warning. In most cases, the preventive measure would include:

  • Moving into places which are safer, e.g. buildings which are structurally sound, and, are not prone to flooding
  • Not venturing out to sea etc for sports, fishing etc.

However, in spite of these warnings, damage to property can not be mitigated much, as, immovable structures can not be relocated.

Another important thing about these kinds of strong winds and rainfall is that they donít appear totally at will. There are well-defined geographical areas, which tend to see incidents of typhoons and cyclones. This means that, people inhabiting these areas could take some fundamental care, while, building homes etc. These are:

  • Sturdy home, with very strong foundation and structure.
  • Typically, most people build basements. These basements provide good shelter, and, storage space for food and water to last for a few days for the entire household.
  • Proper embankments to prevent flooding etc.
  • Storage of cement-bags and plastic sheets to prepare additional embankments against flooding, if required.
The people who suffer the most are poor people, because:
  • they donít have the means to build very strong houses, and hence, these houses get blown off/damaged
  • they donít have the means to buy and store food and provisions for several days, causing them to take risks of venturing out during heavy winds/rainfalls to make some money
  • In coastal areas of poor country, fishermen have been known to venture out to sea, even during cyclones etc.