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Table of Contents
A natural disaster is the consequence of the combination of a natural hazard (a physical event like a volcanic eruption, typhoon, tropical cyclone, tornado, earthquake, landslide, or tsunami) and human activities.
See the fact file below for more information on Natural Disasters or alternatively, you can download our 31-page Natural Disasters worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
DEFINITION AND GENERAL INFORMATION
- A natural disaster is a major adverse event resulting from natural processes of the Earth; examples include floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, tsunamis, and other geologic processes.
- It can cause loss of life or property damage, and typically leaves some economic damage in its wake, the severity of which depends on the affected population’s resilience or ability to recover and also on the infrastructure available.
- Most natural disasters are caused by weather. Weather disasters can be caused by hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, tsunamis, thunderstorms, wind storms, wildfires, avalanches, and blizzards.
- Some weather disasters can be predicted, such as hurricanes and blizzards. Technology for predicting tornadoes and severe thunderstorms is improving. By getting data early, people can be warned to take shelter or make the necessary preparations.
- However, some natural disasters caused by volcanoes and earthquakes are not always predictable.
- Some disasters are more common in some places than in others. When people are choosing a place to live, they should consider whether they will be living on a fault line for an earthquake or near a river that has a history of flooding.
- There isn’t any way to avoid natural disasters, but if people know what kinds of disasters are most likely where they live, they can learn what to do if a disaster happens in order to stay safe.
- Geological natural disasters like earthquakes and volcanic eruptions are triggered by activities taking place in the earth’s inner cores.
- Gravity also affects the landscape, resulting in landslides, rock falls, debris flows or avalanches since rock, mud, or snow masses slide down the slope.
- Geological hazards are potential disasters because they affect the foundations of buildings, homes, and structures such as roads and bridges.
- The impacts of geological hazards vary. In areas located above seismic areas such as the Pacific Ring of Fire, geological disasters occur more often: volcanic eruptions and earthquakes often result in tsunamis, land and rockslides, avalanches, and sometimes sinkholes.
- Countries above inactive seismic areas may still suffer geological hazards when massive landforms lose their hold, such as rockslides and landslides.
- While most geological disasters result from natural occurrences, human activity also triggers them. Carving mountains for road building weakens the soil stability held by rocks and trees.
- Mining also results in geologic disaster when mountains and caves cave in after improper use, due to the deployment of mining explosives, and failure to maintain the integrity of the mining shaft.
- Hydrological disasters are violent, sharp, and harmful alterations in the quality of the Earth’s water or in the movement of water ashore below the surface or in the atmosphere.
- Hydrological hazards and their impacts are also associated with climate change, demographic trends, land displacement, and other factors, and may have been exasperated by global climate change.
- On land, this kind of disaster happens through floods or slides. Depending on the intensity and duration of rainfall, temperatures, snow cover, geological makeup, and topography, these kinds of disasters happen.
- The place that receives the most rainfall in the world is a village called Mawsynram in the state of Meghalaya, India. This village receives an average of 467 inches of rain per year, resulting in constant flooding and risks of landslides.
- In our vast oceans, hydrological hazards happen most often. Above water, ships and water vessels suffer from huge waves and storms. Below, geological displacements result in tsunamis, devastating the shores they reach.
- The latest Tonga underwater volcano eruption not only resulted in heavy ash fall, release of poisonous gas and radiation, but also a huge series of tsunamis affecting Tonga, Japan, and other neighboring countries.
- Meteorological disasters are caused by extreme weather such as heavy rain, severe drought, severe snowfall, extreme heat, or cold, ice, or wind.
- Violent, sudden, and destructive change to the environment often results in disasters out of humans’ control. These phenomena happen everywhere in the world.
- Most common meteorological disasters include tornadoes, hurricanes/typhoons/cyclones, thunderstorms, hailstorms, heatwaves, and droughts.
- The deadliest single tornado in the United States – The Tri-State Tornado – claimed 747 lives as it crossed Missouri, southern Illinois and into southwestern Indiana on March 18, 1925. Tornadoes often develop from severe thunderstorms in warm, moist, unstable air along and ahead of cold fronts.
- Hailstorms are formed when drops of water freeze together in the cold upper regions of thunderstorm clouds and fall on earth. On severe cases, hailstones can be deadly. On April 30, 1988, India suffered its worst hailstorm, killing 246 individuals with hailstones as large as goose eggs and cricket balls.
- Cyclones are wind storms accompanied by heavy rainfall in low-pressure areas caused by a continuous process of rising hot air over the ocean surface. In other areas, cycles are called typhoons or hurricanes. Typhoon Tip (Warling in Philippines), was the largest and most intense tropical cyclone ever recorded.
- Intense heat results in two major disasters, heatwave and drought. Both natural occurrences severely affect all living things as they deplete water resources and cause heat stroke to humans and animals.
Natural Disasters Worksheets
This is a fantastic bundle that includes everything you need to know about Natural Disasters across 31 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use worksheets that are perfect for teaching about Natural Disasters which are the consequence of the combination of a natural hazard (a physical event like a volcanic eruption, typhoon, tropical cyclone, tornado, earthquake, landslide, or tsunami) and human activities.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Natural Disasters Facts
- Moving Landscape
- Geographical Disasters
- Earthquake Response
- Water Disasters
- Tsunami Alert
- Flood Preparation
- Signs of the Sky
- Sky-high Records
- Situational Analysis
- Always Ready
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the most common natural disasters?
The most common types of natural disasters include tornadoes and hurricanes (tropical storms), floods or drought, and wildfires. Earthquakes, volcanoes and tsunamis are comparatively rarer.
What causes natural disasters?
There are a range of factors that cause natural disasters. For earthquakes and tsunamis, they are caused by movement and pressure in the earth’s crust. For events like hurricanes and tornadoes, weather and pressure systems play a key role. For disasters like floods and drought, climate change and disturbances to rainfall are key factors.
What natural disaster is the most dangerous?
Each kind of natural disaster has its own degree of risk and damage to life and infrastructure. Floods and tornadoes can cause extensive but localized damage. Earthquakes, tsunamis and hurricanes can wreak havoc on large areas. But drought can cause massive damage to economies and the lives of people over many years.
What is the most common natural disaster?
The most frequent form of natural disaster around the world is flooding. This can be caused by snow melting, excessive rainfall, sudden rainfall, a storm surge from a hurricane, or the result of a tsunami.
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Link will appear as Natural Disasters Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, April 6, 2022
Use With Any Curriculum
These worksheets have been specifically designed for use with any international curriculum. You can use these worksheets as-is, or edit them using Google Slides to make them more specific to your own student ability levels and curriculum standards.