Home / Most Common Questions About Disasters

Hurricanes

The National Ocean Service predicts about 12 hurricanes per year. There has been an uptick in storms, however. In 2020, there were 30 such storms, a record high. And not only are storms more frequent, but they are becoming more intense. As sea levels rise and ocean temperatures warm, tempests lime these are likely to be more common and more forceful in the future. Keep reading >>

 

Tornadoes

Tornadic events occur during all seasons. But there is a peak period where such storms are most common, considered "tornado season." That peak begins in March and lasts through June. Keep reading >>

 

Tsunamis

The National Ocean Service defines them as such: "Tsunamis are giant waves caused by earthquakes or volcanic eruptions under the sea. Out in the depths of the ocean, tsunami waves do not dramatically increase in height. But as the waves travel inland, they build up to higher and higher heights as the depth of the oceaan decreases. The speed of tsunami waves depends on ocean depth rather than the distance from the source of the wave. Tsunami waves may travel as fast as jet planes over deep waters, only slowing down when reaching shallow waters. While tsunamis are often referred to as tidal waves, this name is discouraged by oceanographers because tides have little to do with these giant waves. Keep reading >>

 

Volcanoes

Given that active volcanoes can remain active for centuries and are often unpredictable as to their explosions, it's important to know what they are, the risks of being near one, and how to respond to a volcanic eruption event. According to the United States Geological Survey, such a unique natural formation as this is defined as follows: “Volcanoes are openings, or vents where lava, tephra (small rocks), and steam erupt on to the Earth's surface. Volcanic terrain, however, is built by the slow accumulation of erupted lava. The vent may be visible as a small bowl shaped depression at the summit of a cone or shield-shaped mountain. Through a series of cracks within and beneath the volcano, the vent connects to one or more linked storage areas of molten or partially molten rock (magma). This connection to fresh magma allows the volcano to erupt over and over again in the same location. Keep reading >>

 

Earthquakes

It takes a very specific geological event to create an earthquake. Here's how it happens: The ever-present movement of the tectonic plates beneath the Earth's crust causes occasional collisions that release energy, essentially a grinding between two plates. This results in an earthquake. Most quakes tend to occur along fault lines (boundaries between plates) because this is where most movement occurs, plate-to-plate. Keep reading >>

 

Floods

What is this event actually? How is it different from a flash event? Flash water surges are the most dangerous type of flood because they combine the destructive power of a huge, moving body of water with immense speed. Flash events usually develop rapidly, giving residents little time to evacuate. In particularly steep, clay-earth areas or in regions that receive a lot of rainfall, a flash flood can form in under an hour. Such an event can put countless human lives in danger extremely rapidly. Keep reading >>

 

Wildfires

Such a blaze can start with anything from a cigarette butt or a spark from a car’s muffler to a lightning strike or a tree falling against a power line. Unfortunately, there are many ways in which such fires can take off. Keep reading >>

 

Heat Waves

When we think of natural disasters, we usually think of serious crisis-level events like hurricanes, tsunamis, earthquakes, tornadoes, etc. But these are not the only natural disasters that pose a serious risk to people living in the United States and across the world. Other disasters can occur in the form of more sinister, less obvious natural events, like a sudden and serious change in temperature. When the temperature spikes very high into an uncomfortable and even dangerous realm, that is considered a heat wave. Keep reading >>

 

Cold Snaps

When we think of natural disasters, we usually think of serious, breaking-news crisis-level events like hurricanes, tsunamis, earthquakes, tornadoes, etc. But these are not the only natural disasters that pose a serious risk to people living in the United States and across the world. Other disasters can occur in the form of more sinister, less obvious natural events, like a sudden and serious change in temperature. Keep reading >>

 

Pandemics

While the term "pandemic" may be thrown around quite a bit and used to refer to a number of different events (like a "pandemic" of mortgage lending leading up to the 2008 housing crisis), this is actually a very specific medical term. Keep reading >>

 

Nuclear Disasters

Such warheads vary greatly in size, depending on the “yield” (destructive potential) of the bomb. Such such missiles are small enough to be launched from an automobile-based artillery or even a human-carried rocket launcher. Others are so large they must be launched from a battleship, submarine, or airplane. Keep Reading >>