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Lesson 17: Natural Hazards. Flooding near Olympia, WA, Dec 2007. Big Question: Why Are More Of Them Becoming Disasters and Catastrophes?. Case Study: Seattle Landslides. Rob Harrison photo For more information and photos, see Landslides in Seattle . Hazards, Disasters, and Catastrophes.

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lesson 17 natural hazards

Lesson 17: Natural Hazards

Flooding near Olympia, WA, Dec 2007

Big Question:

Why Are More Of Them Becoming Disasters and Catastrophes?

case study seattle landslides
Case Study: Seattle Landslides

Rob Harrison photo

For more information and photos, see Landslides in Seattle.

fundamental concepts related to natural hazards
Fundamental Concepts Related to Natural Hazards
  • Hazards are predictable.
  • Links exist between different hazards and between the physical and biological environment.
  • Hazards that used to cause mostly disasters are now producing catastrophes.
  • Risk from hazards can be estimated.
  • Harmful effects of hazards can be minimized.
natural hazards are predictable
Natural Hazards Are Predictable

Mapping and monitoring are keys to spotting danger. Sometimes it is possible to forecast an event and issue a warning

indonesian tsunami of 2004
Indonesian tsunami of 2004

An Indian Ocean tsunami warning system would have triggered warnings automatically.

linkages between hazards and between the physical and biological environments
Linkages Between Hazards and Between the Physical and Biological Environments

Hazards may be linked

  • Volcanic eruptions often cause landslides.
  • Mount St. Helens altered landscape and ecosystems.
the cost of hurricane katrina
The Cost of Hurricane Katrina
  • Warnings were given, but funds were lacking.
  • The whole New Orleans area is subsiding.
estimating hazard risk
Estimating Hazard Risk
  • Determine the probability of an event
  • Estimate the cost of a disaster
  • Estimate risk - Scientific or mathematical theory and previous history
  • Progress in forecasting
  • Estimate the negative consequences
  • Determine acceptable risk
minimizing adverse hazard effects
Minimizing Adverse Hazard Effects

Active versus reactive response:

- anticipate hazardous events;

- be proactive; and

- fast response.

impact and recovery from disasters and catastrophes
Impact and Recovery from Disasters and Catastrophes

Hazardous events may affect society directly and indirectly.

perceiving avoiding and adjusting to hazards
Perceiving, Avoiding, and Adjusting to Hazards
  • People believe that bad things happen to others, not to themselves.
  • Laws can protect people who disregard hazards.
  • Land-use planning to avoid hazards.
  • Obtaining insurance program
  • Implementing evacuation plan
  • Minimizing effects with preparation
  • Control through engineering
disasters and catastrophes in the future
Disasters and Catastrophes in the Future

Significant increase likely to continue with human population growth.

chapter 17 natural hazards

Chapter 17: Natural Hazards

Flooding near Olympia, WA, Dec 2007

Questions? E-mail us at eschelp@uw.edu