(Disaster management: click to enlarge)
There are no standardized rules defining the different phases of the disaster management cycle. Different agencies use different cycles depending upon their objectives. However, while approaches vary, it is agreed that disaster management activities should be carried out in a cycle. Some of the terms used in disaster management are described as follows: * Mitigation: any activity that reduces either the chance of a hazard taking place or a hazard turning into disaster. * Risk reduction: anticipatory measures and actions that seek to avoid future risks as a result of a disaster. * Prevention: avoiding and reduce the chances of disaster, usually the impact and damage of disaster. * Preparedness: plans or preparations made to save lives or property, and help the response and rescue service operations. This phase covers implementation/operation, early warning systems and capacity building so the population will react appropriately when an early warning is issued. * Response: includes actions taken to save lives and prevent property damage, and to preserve the environment during emergencies or disasters. The response phase is the implementation of action plans. * Recovery: includes actions that assist a community to return to a sense of normalcy after a disaster.
Disaster management (also called disaster risk management) is the discipline that involves preparing, warning, supporting and rebuilding societies when natural or man-made disasters occur. It is the continuous process by which all individuals, groups and communities manage hazards in an effort to avoid or minimize the impact of