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What is a Hazard? How is it Classified?

 

Hazard may be defined as "a dangerous condition or event, that threat or have the potential for causing injury to life or damage to property or the environment.-The word "Hazard" owes  its origin to the word 'hasard' in old French and "Az-zahr" in Arabic meaning "chance" or "luck" . Hazards can be grouped into two broad categories namely natural and manmade.

Natural hazards are hazards which are caused because of natural phenomena(hazards with meteorological, geological or even biological origin). Examples of natural hazards are cyclones, tsunamis, earthquake and volcanic eruption which are exclusively of natural origin. Landslides, floods, drought, fires are socio-natural hazards since their causes, are both natural and man-made. For example flooding may be caused because of heavy rains, landslide or blocking of drains with human waste.

Manmade hazards are hazards which are due to human negligence. Manmade hazards are associated with industries or energy generation facilities and include explosions, leakage of toxic waste, pollution, dam failure, wars or civil strife etc.

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