2010 deadliest year for natural disasters

Nearly 300,000 people were killed by natural disasters in 2010, according to figures released by the United Nations.

Haiti Earthquake

Haiti Earthquake

The most lethal disasters were the earthquake in Haiti, which killed over 222,500 people and the Russian summer heat wave and forest fires, which killed about 56,000 people.

The UN Disaster Reduction Secretariat says 2010 was the deadliest year for natural disasters in the past two decades.

A total 373 natural disasters occurred affecting close to 210 million people and leaving a trail of destruction whose cost has been estimated at over 110 billion dollars.

Margareta Wahlström, UN Special Representative for Disaster Reduction says disaster preparedness was no longer optional adding that unless countries act now, the human cost of natural disasters will continue to rise.

“If you want to save lives, you have to be prepared. You cannot consider a disaster as something that happens once, then you continue your life and you get very surprised when it happens next time. No. You have to have a credible early warning systems which is not technology only its also about people understanding and realizing that the risk also affects me. So you have to trust the early warning signal. Secondly, you have to have credible social preparedness which means the entire country the community the city, are prepared to act on early warning signals; that’s the way you save lives.”

Floods were the most frequent natural disasters in 2010 with 182 incidents registered.

There were 83 storms, 29 incidents of extreme temperatures and 23 earthquakes.

Filed under Today's News.
UN Radio Daily News Programme
UN Radio Daily News Programme
Updated at 1800 GMT, Monday to Friday
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