PROFILING DISASTERS IN KENYA AND THEIR CAUSES
Huho, Julius M.
Mashara, Janet N.
Musyimi, Peter K.
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Disasters occur naturally or are caused by human activities. Most of the disasters experienced occur naturally with hydro-meteorological disasters leading. Human activities aggravate their occurrence and intensity. Global trends indicate that both natural and man-made disasters are on the increase and the more people are being affected. The most vulnerable are the poor who are exposed to various disaster risks. Most of these people are found in the developing countries where the level of disaster preparedness, resources and knowhow is still low. Kenya, like other developing countries of the world, has her populace vulnerable to disaster risks resulting in deaths and loss of property worth millions. About 70% of the disasters are hydro-meteorological in nature particularly droughts and floods. Other common disasters include road accidents, fire tragedies, collapsing buildings and disease outbreaks. Poverty has been referred to many as the spring board of many disasters in Kenya. Poverty has led to emergence of vices such as corruption, ignorance of law, political manipulation, inadequate resources and destruction of environment which leads to climate change. Culture and beliefs have also been associated with vulnerability to disaster risks. Therefore, to reduce the risks wealth creation will be vital for the country.