A disaster is a natural or man-made (or technological) hazard that becomes an event in reality of substantial extent causing significant physical damage or destruction, loss of life, or drastic change to the environment.


There are two classifications of disasters: Natural Disaster and Man-Made Disaster. Some disasters can actually be a combination of Natural Disaster and Man-Made Disaster. For example: (1) An earthquake causing a gas line break and fire that destroys a neighborhood. (2) A tsunami causing flooding and power failures that disrupts normal operation of a nuclear power plant, which causes a nuclear power plant malfunction and release of radiation. (3) Infrastructure attacks that exacerbate effects of a natural disaster.

Natural Disaster
A natural disaster is a consequence when a natural hazard becomes and event in reality and affects humans, the environment, and/or the constructed environment. Human vulnerability, and lack of planning, lack of appropriate emergency management and lack of appropriate information management and tardy communication or lack of alerting leads to financial, environmental, or human impact.

Natural disasters worldwide include cyclones, droughts, earthquakes, floods, heat emergencies, hurricanes, landslides, major fires caused by the environment (e.g., lightning) tornados, volcanic eruptions, and wildfires (lightning).

Man-Made Disasters/Terrorism/War
Man-made disasters are the consequence of technological or human hazards that become an event or events in reality which also affect humans, the environment, and/or the constructed environment. Man-Made Disasters can be accidental or intentional.

Man-made disasters worldwide include major fires, transportation or industrial accidents that cause major fires, transportation or industrial accidents that cause contamination of the environment, transportation or industrial accidents that cause release of hazardous chemicals or radiation that causes mass casualties, oil spills, explosions, improvised explosive device (IED), dirty bombs (radioactive), suicide bombings, remote activated or timed explosions, mass shootings, infrastructure attacks, cyber-attacks, and wildfires (arson, careless use of campfire materials, careless use of smoking materials).

Looting is the indiscriminate taking of goods by force or by theft as part of a military or political victory during war or terrorist acts; or involving a public disturbance such as during rioting, a natural disaster, man-made disaster, or war.