Without international assistance, no country can master sufficient resources to effectively respond to disasters. However each nation needs to have in place some institutional preparedness for initial rapid response and systems to mobilize follow-up.
Earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and tsunamis are "acts of God” and are mostly unpredictable in location, timing and magnitude.
Other "lesser" nature -caused disasters include hurricanes, floods, severe droughts and famines which have a habit of recurring in the same locations.
This category of disasters has usually been associated with the impacts of global warming. These can, to some extent be predicted and basic response prepared.
Other lesser nature costs disasters include hurricanes floods severe droughts and famines and famines which have a habit of recurring in the same locations.
These category of disasters has usually been associated with the impacts of global warming. this can to some extent be predicted and basic response prepared.
Others are attributable to human negligence (errors of omission or commission) and which can be pre vented or minimized if due care and compliance are emphasized, this preventable incidents include fire, collapsing buildings, and transport related incidents and also disease epidemics.
Finally, we have incidents which are associated with "human" ill intentions.
These includes include terrorist incidents which can either involve real time shooting (Garissa, west gate, for example) or sabotage such as the 1998 US embassy bombing.
This group of emergencies also includes civil unrest and ethnic skirmishes which have socio-political origins and can be prevented through political engagements.
The list above is what can go wrong in Kenya. It is such an analysis of potential disasters that should inform preparation of our national disaster preparedness plan.
From observations, Kenya is frequently caught unawares by disasters and for this reason, misses many opportunities to minimise loss of life and property.
Repeat disasters have happened at the same time or different locations, mostly because of failing to learn from experience.
One can bet that the recent floods in Nairobi and Narok will repeat themselves in the same location and with similar destructive impact. This will be the case unless corrective actions are taken.
A typical emergency preparedness plan identifies potential disasters and puts in place institutions, systems and resources to either prevent such disasters or reduce their destructive impact. An effective plan should always be ready.
The nature and location of readiness should be as varied as there are different potential disasters.
To implement a disaster preparedness plan, we need as Kenyans a legally established disaster management institution that is sufficiently funded and resourced.