Exposure to Forces of Nature and Disaster


Exposure to Forces of Nature Indicator represents any disaster resulting from climatic, meteorological, or other natural hazards. Some examples of natural hazards include floods, lightning, oceanic wind storms (hurricanes, cyclones, and typhoons), tornadoes, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, landslides, and avalanches.

Vulnerable members of society such as children, the elderly, and individuals living with a disability are at a greater risk than healthy young adults. For instance, when the Indian Ocean tsunami hit in 2004, it led to 180,000 people dead or missing. A higher proportion of vulnerable individuals died than young, healthy adults. Mitigating hazards associated with natural disasters are long-term investments infrastructure, land planning and community preparation. Governments should invest in infrastructures resistant to specific−hazards that apply to a given region such as lumber house−frames for earthquakes, dams for floods, underground facilities for tornadoes, etc. Emergency drills, evacuation procedures, and designated shelters can help to mitigate the effects of a disaster. An effectively planned and integrated response plan by emergency services and government agencies is a critical priority in reducing the losses associated with natural disasters.

In Forces of Nature Indicator, Haiti, Myanmar, Sierra Leone, Iran and Nepal are most impacted by natural hazards.

The 2018 version of the UL Safety Index uses data from the 2017 Global Burden of Disease Study. Hurricanes Irma and Maria impacted Haiti in 2017. The seasonal floods in Myanmar during July and August 2017 affected 13 of the country’s 14 states and regions, and mudslides and flooding resulted in more than 1,000 people dead or missing in Sierra Leone in August. Nepal was also impacted by flooding and landslides, while the issue in Iran was an earthquake that resulted in 630 deaths and more than 7,000 serious injuries requiring hospitalizations.

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