The Extent to Which Tectonic Processes Represent a Hazard Depends Upon When and Where They Are Experienced (40)

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The extent to which tectonic processes represent a hazard depends upon when and where they are experienced (40)
A hazard can best be defined as a 'situation that poses a level of threat to life, health, property or the environment.' The overall impact of earthquakes as a natural hazard varies greatly from one place and timeframe to another. As do the types of hazards, which are categorised into primary and secondary. Primary hazards are created by the direct seismic energy of an earthquake, this could include liquefaction, slope failure and tsunamis. These primary hazards can in turn trigger secondary hazards such as floods, fires, disease and destabilisation of infrastructure. A number of factors play a part in determining the severity of these hazards.
For me the most influential factor is where the tectonic process occurs in relation to the levels of development of that area. MEDC's tend to cope better with the hazard of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions than LEDC's because they have all the necessary resources to survive the effects of these hazards at their disposal. Such as earthquake proof buildings that are designed to withstand earthquakes by using strong materials such as reinforced concrete or building special foundations that absorb an earthquakes energy e.g. the Bank Tower in Los Angeles, California. Construction laws in some earthquake-prone counties (e.g. Japan and the US) have become stricter in recent years – this means that newer buildings are more likely to be able to withstand earthquakes. Another technique in order to protect people from the effects of volcanoes is diverting lava away from settlements using barriers. For example when Mt. Etna erupted in 1983 a rubble barrier 10m high and 400m long was built on its slopes, which successfully diverted the lava flow. However, this is only possible where the lava is slow moving and there is…...

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