Geography Hazards Case Studies

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  • Created by: emily.16
  • Created on: 07-05-16 13:55

TROPICAL STORMS - Hurricane Katrina - HIC

  • 29th August 2005, USA
  • Category 3 at landfall on the 29th, but did reach as high as Cat. 5 
  • Winds up to 280km/h 
  • 8.5m high storm surges - broke levee defences of New Orleans, leading to widespread flooding

Social Effects: 1,836 dead, 1 million homeless, lack of sanitation and clean water, problems with looting and social disorder

Economic Effects: US$98 billion to rebuild housing and care for people made homeless and jobless, around US$108 spent overall 

Environmental Effects: Coastal habitats damaged, floodwaters polluted

Responses: State of Emergency declared 2 days before the storm hit, National Guard mobilised, Emergency shelters set up, Evacuations in many cities, Massive effort to rescues survivors and provide shelter for homeless/jobless, International aid (e.g. military, medical, humanitarian). LONG-TERM = rebuilding and strengthening of flood defences (levees) and major rebuilding of New Orleans

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TROPICAL STORMS - Typhoon Haiyan - LIC

  • 8th November 2013, Philippines 
  • Category 5 (peak intensity on 7th Nov), deadliest typhoon in history of Philippines
  • Wind speeds up to 315km/h and hard rains
  • Storm Surge 25ft high in some areas, caused flooding and landslides 

Social Effects: 14 million people affected, 6,201 deaths, 1,785 missing, 6 million displaced, 1.9 million homeless, 5 million homes damaged/destroyed, lack of food and water, no shelter, injuries and illness, lack of sanitation

Economic Effects: Tonnes of crops were lost, losing their main source of income. An estimated US$2.9 billion spent in recovery.

Environmental Effects: Hundreds of hectares of farmland destroyed, loss of forests and widespread flooding, oil and sewerage leaks into local ecosystems

Response: Assistance from numerous organisations including the UN and World Health Organisation. Help from over 15 countries (monetary, military, medical and humanitarian). Their government has been criticised for its 'slow' response. 'No build zones' within 40m of the high tide mark in coastal areas.

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EARTHQUAKES - Kobe earthquake, Japan - HIC

  • 17th January 1995, city of Kobe in Japan, 7.2 on the Richter scale
  • Occured as a result of plate movement along the boundary between the Philippines plate, Pacific Plate and Eurasian Plate. Epicentre = near Awaji Island 
  • It was the worst eartquake to hit Japan for 50 years

Social Effects: 6434 dead, 40,000 injured, 300,000 homeless, 2mil without electricity, 1mil without clean water for 10 days, over 100,000 buildings destroyed, over 300 fires

Economic Effects: $200 billion in damage, companies had to close temporarily e.g Panasonic

Environmental Effects: Primary - Buildings/bridges collapse, gas mains rupture, water pipes fracture, sections of elevated road collapsed and railway lines buckled. Secondary - Fires destroy buildings due to gas mains rupture, fires out of control

Response: Searches for suvivors, emergency services, evacuations and emergency rations, major retailers gave free supplies e.g.Motorola free mobile connections. Long term recovery = quick, railways 80% operational in a month, most roads back to normal by July, year later the port was 80% operational, new buildings further apart to prevent domino effect, more earthquake proofed buildings, earthquake drills every year

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EARTHQUAKES - Haiti 2010 - LIC

  • Tuesday 12th January 2010, 7.0 on the richter scale, one of the most destrutctive earthquakes ever, Large aftershocks of up to 5.0 on the Richter scale 
  • stress build up between the North American and Caribbean plates, conservative plate margin, stress released when sudden slip = earthquake, shallow focus (5miles)

Social Effects: 230,000 dead, 180,000 homes destroyed by shaking, 2mil affected, 1.5mil homeless, 5000 schools damaged or destroyed. Services (e.g. electricity, water, communications, sanitation) damaged or destroyed. Looting became an issue.

Economic Effects:Estimated $11.5 billion in damages, 1 in 5 lost their jobs because the buildings were destroyed.

Environmental Effects: Lack of sanitation and clean water caused cholera to spread in the camps (over 1100 camps for the homeless). Storms and flooding made camp life worse.

Response: International aid heavily relied upon (food, water, medical, shelters), search and rescue, $100 million from USA and $330 million from European Union (in aid), 810,000 placed in aid camps. Long term - 3/4 of buildings repaired, 200,000 people recieved money for the work they did e.g. clearing rubble. A year later people still in aid camps and rubble wasnt cleared fast, restricting aid access

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  • 18th May 1980, Washington State USA, Cascade Range Mountains, destructive plate boundary between the Juan de Fuca (being subducted) and North American plates
  • Biggest and worst eruption to hit the USA, ever. Trigger stimulus = Cat5 earthquake

Social Effects: 57 people died, 7000 animals died, destroyed 250 homes, 47 bridges, 15 miles of railways and 185 miles of highway

Economic Effects: Ash clogged up cars/machinery - £100million, Flights/transport cancelled, timber industry gone, no more tourists - reduction in local economy. Estimated short term losses in washington state = $800 million. Clean up = $250 million

Environmental Effects: Huge pyroclastic flow, lahars (mudflows), forest flattened, lake filled with mud, rivers choked, thick ash fell

Response: Evacuation prior to eruption, emergency helicopters and aeroplanes in case an eruption occured, National guard, clean water, rations, medical supplies, over 10million trees replanted, bridges rebuilt to withstand earthquakes and high enough to not be affected by lahars, volcano constantly monitored and plans/preps in place to warn people in immediate blast zone if it's occuring again

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  • 15th June 1991, Philippines, 100km northwest of Manila, on the island of Luzon
  • Formed where the Eurasian plate is subducted beneath the Oceanic Philippines plate, pyroclastic flows - flows of burning gases from the crater at speeds over 200kmph

Social Effects: 847 dead, 300 from roof collapse, 100 from lahars, the rest from disease in evac centres, 42,000 houses destroyed, 1.2mil lost homes, 184 injured, 1.2mil affected, power supplies cut, water contaminated, roads destroyed, people moved to Manila shantytowns

Economic Effects:65,000 lost jobs, farmland destroyed, full economic recovery = £10billion

Environmental Effects: lahars=severe erosion and affecterd the area for 6yrs, volcanic ash smothered the land, global cooling due to ash of 0.5˚C, acid rain due to 22mil tonnes of sulfur dioxide released, 150km² of reforestation projects destroyed

Response: monitored by scientists before eruption, thousands of people evacuated, governement shelters, evacuation camps built for refugees, 200,000 people relocated, charities provided food and blankets, millions in international aid, LONG TERM - new houses on stilts (avoid lahars), protecting against lahars by building dykes and dams, getting new work for the farmers, creating new towns/villages away from disaster area

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