Disaster management is aimed at minimizing or avoiding the potential losses from extreme events and assuring rapid and proper help to the affected people and ascertaining a quick and effective recovery. All the activities, programmes and measures that are taken up during and after a disaster to reduce the severity of its impact and quick recovery from the losses come in the purview of disaster management.
Three main stages generally include in disaster management are as follows-
1. Pre-disaster activities: some activities or actions have to be before a disaster to minimize any loss of human life and property which is supposed to be cause by a potential hazard.
2. Activities during a disaster: it includes the initiatives taken in advance to ensure that the needs of the potential victims are met with and their sufferings are minimized. Various emergency measures are also taken in this stage.
3. Post- disaster activities: this stage includes the activities done immediately after a disaster to make quick recovery and rehabilitation of the affected people. These are also known as response and recovery activities.
The Disaster management cycle illustrates the process through while the government and the civil society try to reduce the impact of disaster. Various steps are taken during and just after the disaster to recover from a disaster.
Components of disaster management
1. Preparedness: in this phase awareness is created among the people about general aspects of disaster and also teaches how to react if such an eventuality occurs. It includes various signs of disasters, away of successful evacuation and aid measures.
2. Response: the period that immediately a disaster is called response. In this period, everybody reacts in this own, arrival of ambulances, rescue personnel and removal of injured people for transportation to medical camps or hospitals lies in this period. It also includes application of first aid life support systems. The general public also contributes in the relief operations. Even the victims also help each other. There is an atmosphere of mutual help and support. The most basic needs of the population during this period are prompt are medical support, food, shelter and clothing.
3. Recovery: after all immediate relief services to the affected people, the next phase of recovery is very important in terms of the long term outcomes of the disaster. In fact, in this stage victims begin to realize the impact of the disaster, the losses they have incurred. They are kept at the places which are not their own house. As they begin to realize their real loss, whether of life or property, so this is very critical and the victims may suffer from mental troubles. Therefore, during this period, intensive mental support is needed so as to facilitate proper recovery. After having recovered from the traumatic event physically as well as mentally, the victims now begin to feel the need to return to their normal life again. For this purpose, they require resources to be able to get back to their own houses and resume their occupation to sustain their life on their own because as the time passes the relief and aid coming their way from the state or other sources begins to allow down. In this way, they are offered an entirely new environment that is adequate enough to pursue a normal course of life. This is called rehabilitation.
4. Risk reduction: during this period, the population returns to the predisaster conditions of life. At the same time, people now recognize the need for the measures to minimize the extent of damages in future if any such event takes place again. For example, if an earthquake occurs, it causes damage to structures so the people of earthquake sensitive areas tries to build more stronger and resistant houses that can bear the impact of an earthquake. Similarly in case of tsunami, people would feel the importance of avoiding housing very close to the shore and creation of a 'green belt' along the coast line to minimize the impact of the, tsunami waves to the land. This process of minimizing the severity of impacts is known as mitigation.