<![CDATA[Ranker: Recent natural disasters Lists]]> http://www.ranker.com/tags/natural-disasters?source=rss http://www.ranker.com/img/skin2/logo.gif Most Viewed Lists on Ranker http://www.ranker.com/tags/natural-disasters?source=rss <![CDATA[The Eruption of Mount St. Helens Was More Powerful Than A Nuclear Bomb]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/facts-about-mount-st-helens-explosion/laura-allan?source=rss

If you were alive at the time of the Mount St. Helens eruption in 1980, then you probably remember the shock and horror it caused across the nation. Ash was everywhere, clean up efforts were needed, people died, and a state of emergency was declared by Washington state. And some of the 1980 Mount St. Helens eruption damage is still being cleaned up to this day! There are even some things you may not even know about this natural disaster that will leave you stunned.

Some of the facts about the 1980 Mount St. Helens eruption are pretty basic. It was definitely a catastrophic eruption - the most destructive of its time - and the ash was so thick that it even buried people and houses. But there are other more intricate facts to cover as well, such as how the eruption was actually heard in some distant cities, but not in nearby ones. It's also worth noting that Mount St. Helens remains an active volcano!

If you weren't alive for this event, you still likely know its name and that it was one for the history books. And we still have much to learn from this fiery mountain.

The Eruption of Mount St. Helens Was More Powerful Than A Nuclear Bomb, videos, natural disasters, disasters, other, volcanoes,

Washington State Had To Remove Over 900,000 Tons Of Ash

Although the ash started as a cloud overtaking Washington state, it had to come down eventually - and it did so in abundance. Streets and cities were soon covered in ash, but not in the fine layer you might be envisioning - in fact, entire houses were lost under ash and debris, and small towns were devastated. Transportation routes were blocked, and the government rushed to remove the ash so that life could continue. About 2.4 million cubic yards of ash were cleaned up from the roads and airports around Washington, which is about 900,000 tons of ash in all. It was difficult to even find places to put it all, and cities ended up converting old quarries and dumps into places to deposit the ash.

Oddly enough, the ash turned out to be very good for farming, so some sites used the ash for mixing topsoil, and were then were seeded with grass. Much of the ash is still stockpiled for use in Washington today.

The Mountain Instantly Became Over 1,000 Feet Shorter

When Mount St. Helens was standing at its previous height, it had a symmetrical cone that stood 9,600 feet above sea level, making it one of the five tallest mountains in Washington at that time. When the blast hit, the mountain crumpled inward, destroying much of the peak and knocking its size down to only around 8,300 feet. This meant that the summit had lost well over 1,000 feet, and had been replaced with a horseshoe-shaped amphitheater. Since then, a new cone has formed in the crater due to recent and gradual volcanic activity, so the mountain is slowly regaining some of its height back.

57 People Were Killed

Although the area around the volcano was not highly populated, it was still a very deadly eruption. Hundreds of homes were destroyed by ash, debris, and flooding, and about 7,000 big game animals, such as deer and bears, were killed. Most notably, though, 57 people were killed during the eruption and its destructive aftermath. Autopsies of the bodies showed that these people were not killed by burning magma, or poison gas, but rather most of them died from asphyxiation, having been buried alive in hot ash, or having breathed it in until they could no longer get an adequate amount of oxygen.

One local folk hero, Harry Randall Truman was among those who died. He had refused to leave the area, as his wife had died only a few days before the eruption. His home was covered with mud, ice, and ash after the explosion, and his body was never found.

The Plume Of Ash Was Over 80,000 Feet High

The summit of the mountain had completely collapsed in on itself on the northern side. Within a few minutes of the initial blast, a black cloud began to funnel out of the summit crater, swooping up into the air like it was coming out of a chimney. This blast tephra towered up, bringing with it ash and smoke, and formed a plume high enough for people to see for hundreds of miles. Within only 15 minutes, the eruption cloud, looking very similar to a mushroom cloud, was over 10,000 feet high and spanned well over 15 miles. Since the winds were strong that day, it wouldn't be long before cities and even nearby states would get a taste of what this plume was really made of.

Parts Of Eastern Washington Were Plunged Into An Artificial Night

As smoke and ash began to plume into the air, people also started to notice strange clouds drifting across the sky. It suddenly appeared as if it might rain or snow, but all that fell was gray and black ash. These clouds were enough to blot out the sun, casting nearby Washington cities into a night-like darkness. In Spokane, over 300 miles away from the blast, streetlights even began to come on, even though it was the middle of the day. These ash clouds continued to cover cities for more than nine hours, with millions of tons of ash drifting across seven states including Oregon, Washington, California, Idaho, and others. The farthest the ash clouds reached was estimated to be 2,200 square miles.

The Mountain Exploded Like A Bomb

The scientist who first called in the impending eruption didn't have much time before the mountain physically exploded before him, killing him nearly instantly. The amount of earth removed was so great that it could have filled a million Olympic-sized swimming pools, and caused the mountain to very suddenly depressurize.

This abrupt change in pressure along the dome turned out to be just enough to trigger an explosion - and that doesn't mean an eruption straight into the sky, either. The volcano blasted laterally and quickly overtook the speed of the landslide, causing hot gasses and material to shoot out at over 300 miles per hour. Within minutes, the blast had destroyed everything in its vicinity, including research stations, trees, and even displacing nearby Spirit Lake. The explosion is considered to have been as powerful as a nuclear bomb.

230 Miles Of Forest Were Destroyed In Minutes

The blast radius of the explosion was impressive. At least 19 miles spanning from the west to the east was destroyed almost instantly, and at least 12 miles were destroyed to the north. There were no trees and no structures left - absolutely everything vanished in the blink of an eye.

But the destruction didn't stop there. The force of the blast knocked trees flat to the ground for at least 230 miles around the blast site, and those fallen trees were promptly covered in hot debris, some of it burning and smoldering from the heat. Spirit Lake was literally sloshing from the incident and was promptly filled with mud and trees that had been carried away in the initial landslide. All of this happened in mere moments, but the destruction from this eruption was only beginning.

It Was Triggered By A Landslide

One might not think of a volcanic eruption as being something that could be set off by a landslide, but that was precisely what happened. On May 18, 1980, at just around noontime, the bulge that had been growing on the north side of the mountain had become so large that it was no longer stable. And when a large earthquake hit, it caused the bulge to break loose into an avalanche. However, inside of it had been a tightly confined pocket of magma, gasses, and liquid, so when enough pressure was released, the volcano was able to very literally let off some steam. Because the avalanche happened in this exact way, the loss of pressure was catastrophically sudden. One researcher, David A. Johnston - who happened to be close to the volcano - saw the avalanche and had just enough time to radio in, "This is it!" before the explosion rocked the area.

We Had A Two-Month Warning

With many natural disasters, we don't get a lot of warning that things are about to go terribly wrong. But such was not the case with Mount St. Helens. Beginning in March of 1980, researchers began recording a series of small earthquakes surrounding the mountain, and they soon began to suspect that something was changing under the surface.

These earthquakes steadily grew in magnitude to above 4.0 on the Richter scale, and the United States Geological Survey and the US Forest Service began holding conferences to discuss what might be happening. They sent teams out to document the mountain's changes, took photographs and readings, and set up research posts. Within the two months that followed, scientists became very certain that not only was the volcano stirring to life, but that it was ready to blow - and soon.

A bulge had begun to develop on the north side, and was growing by six feet per day - it was only a matter of time.

The Eruption Could Be Heard States Away

Sound works strangely sometimes. In the case of Mount St. Helens, the sound of the blast was so intensely strong that it was heard for hundreds of miles with surprising force. People in Montana, Idaho, California, and even British Columbia reported hearing the eruption. However, oddly enough, many cities very close by the eruption heard nothing at all. 

For example, Portland, OR, was only 50 miles from the mountain, but the blast wasn't even heard there - an occurrence known as a "quiet zone." This quiet had to do with the complex response of the sound waves to differences in temperature, air motion, atmosphere, and even local topography. So, someone in Canada may have been able to hear the blast, but places within only tens of miles might have only been alerted to the eruption when they saw the giant plume.

Thu, 15 Jun 2017 01:55:52 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/facts-about-mount-st-helens-explosion/laura-allan
<![CDATA[16 Devastating Photos From The 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/loma-prieta-earthquake-photos/kellie-kreiss?source=rss

California is equally well-known for its earthquakes as it is for its sunshine and rolling hills. For those who grew up in the Golden State, memories of schoolyard earthquake drills accompanied by horror stories about the devastating 7.8 magnitude 1906 earthquake that ravaged the San Francisco Bay Area had a lasting impact. Because of the devastating impacts of the 1906 incident, when the Loma Prieta earthquake hit in 1989, some would have thought California would be better prepared for the 7.1 magnitude quake - they thought wrong. 

Though the scale of the notorious 1906 earthquake far exceeded the destruction caused by the following one in 1989 - with some estimates stating that well over 3,000 people were killed in the 7.8 magnitude quake and the impending fire that overtook much of San Francisco - the '89 event certainly forced a reality check upon northern California's residents and government agencies. 

Despite having enforced new building codes throughout the Bay Area as recently as the 1970s, many buildings and bridges had not yet been equipped with the necessary earthquake-ready retrofitting. As a result, when the earthquake suddenly hit on October 17, 1989, with an epicenter near Loma Prieta Peak in the Santa Cruz Mountains, San Francisco found itself consumed by crumbling bridges and buildings collapsing into the suddenly liquefied ground.

Here you will find a series of photos depicting just how destructive an earthquake lasting just a few minutes was for the San Francisco Bay Area. And, with more experts than ever predicting another quake in California's near future, take a minute to look through these images and then send this to your favorite Californian to show them why they need to get earthquake ready - and fast.

16 Devastating Photos From The 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake,

Many Had To Escape From The Windows Of Their Crumbling Apartments

The 1989 Earthquake Occurred Along The San Andreas Fault Line, Its Epicenter In The Santa Cruz Mountains

As The Ground Liquified, Buildings Cracked And Collapsed Into Themselves

In The Marina District, Much Of The Foundation Ground Liquified During The Quake

As Many Of The Buildings In The Marina District Continued To Crumble, Rescue Workers Had To Work Fast To Locate Missing People

Rescue Workers Had To Search Crumbling Buildings For Survivors

People Gathered In The Streets, Devastated At Losing Their Homes

Fires Broke Out Across The City, Particularly In The Marina District, And Took Two Days To Fully Contain

Firefighters And Emergency Personnel Were On High Alert During The Aftermath Of The Quake

A Car Destroyed In The Quake, Killing Three People, Near 6th And Townsend

Thu, 01 Jun 2017 10:46:36 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/loma-prieta-earthquake-photos/kellie-kreiss
<![CDATA[This Lawn Won't Mow Itself – Pic Of Fearless Canadian During Tornado Goes Viral]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/canada-tornado-lawnmower-picture/katejacobson?source=rss

We've all been there: Your mom, dad, or significant other is dogging you to do some basic household chores. And we've all used some pretty terrible excuses. But one Canadian hero who had the ultimate get-out-of-chores-free card – a barreling tornado – declined to use it. Because damn it; this lawn isn't going to mow itself.

Theunis Wessels, of Alberta, Canada, wasn't going to let the impending doom of a tornado literally in his backyard stop him from doing his thing in June 2017. According to his wife, who snapped the photo of a calm, cool, collected Wessels gettin' after his yard work, he couldn't care less about the fact that he was inches (okay, a mile) from death. 

This Canadian lawn-mowing-in-the-face-of-a-tornado hero can teach us all a thing or two. Sometimes, when a tornado is hurling your way (figuratively), you should just keep mowing your lawn. Or something.

This Lawn Won't Mow Itself – Pic Of Fearless Canadian During Tornado Goes Viral,

But Really, If You See A Tornado, You Should Probably Take Cover

Cecilia Wessels said her husband had some storm chasing experience and was familiar with tornadoes. The storm moved east from behind their house and broke up within a matter of minutes. No one was harmed. 

Despite this, most experts say that if you see a tornado coming your way, it's probably best to take cover in a grounded building or a sturdy structure. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, people should seek cover in a basement, tornado shelter, or a windowless room in the center of the building, like a closet or a bathroom. You should then crouch down, cover your head, and grab any sort of padded material to place around your body – like a mattress.

Theunis Wessels Knew A Tornado Was Behind Him, But Did He Care?? No.

Everyone knows Canada is amazing. It's got Justin Trudeau, Degrassi: The Next Generation, and poutine (if you haven't tried it, have you even lived?). The latest legend to come out of our neighbor to the north is Theunis Wessels. 

According to his wife Cecilia, Theunis Wessels was doing his afternoon housework when the storm started to brew. She woke up from a nap to discover the bad storm had produced a full-blown tornado just 1.25 miles from their home in Three Hills, Alberta. Their nine-year-old daughter said she tried to get her father to come inside, but he insisted the storm would just blow over.

"He said, 'everything is okay,' and he looked calm and in control," Cecilia Wessels told the BBC. Theunis Wessels himself told CBC News he "was keeping an eye on it." 

The Wessels Fam Is Now Internationally Known (On The Internet)

Since posting the picture to her Facebook page, Cecilia Wessels's image of her husband has gone viral. It's been shared thousands of times, and people on the Internet are clamoring to be friends with the couple via social media, Cecilia Wessels said. Guess that's what happens when you're a BAMF with a to-do list. 

Mon, 05 Jun 2017 06:32:55 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/canada-tornado-lawnmower-picture/katejacobson
<![CDATA[18 Harrowing Images From Hurricane Katrina]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/images-of-hurricane-katrina/mick-jacobs?source=rss

Though they date back to an event from over a decade ago, photographs of Hurricane Katrina still impact viewers with their depictions of one of history's worst hurricanes. The continual aftermath of this tragedy was detailed through photos of Katrina's aftermath, a humanitarian disaster that remained a top news story for years to come. Due to the storm's immense power, storm photos of Hurricane Katrina are few and far between; even those captured fall victim to the hurricane's "white out" effect, an effect that unwittingly makes the photos much more chaotic in appearance. 

The process of capturing photos during Hurricane Katrina relied on the bravery of both storm chasers and members of the military; some military base members actually documented Hurricane Katrina pictures as it raged through their home base in Alabama. Though Katrina hit New Orleans the hardest, it was only one of many different cities in multiple states from Florida all the way to Mississippi that bore the brunt of Katrina's high winds and storm surge. 

18 Harrowing Images From Hurricane Katrina,

Mobile, Alabama Feels The Force Of Hurricane Katrina

Hurricane Katrina Drowns Out More Roads In Gulfport

A Record Setting Flood Surge Pours Into Gulfport, Mississippi

Gulfport, Mississippi, The Morning Of Hurricane Katrina

Hurricane Katrina Blasts Through Gulfport, Mississippi

Professional Storm Photographer Mike Theiss Forced Into A Building Corner In Gulfport, Mississippi

Mike Theiss Documents The Storm From A Hotel Doorway

Storm Photographer Mike Theiss Struggles To Regain Balance

Resident Tiffany Stone Captures The Storm From Inside Their Home

Hurricane Katrina's Eyewall, Taken By Aircraft The Day Before She Hit Land

Wed, 31 May 2017 01:45:37 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/images-of-hurricane-katrina/mick-jacobs
<![CDATA[16 Times Natural Disasters Almost Ended the World]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/natural-disasters-that-almost-ended-the-world/daveesons?source=rss

The beauty and mystery of nature and outer space are awe-inspiring - until one considers that these forces, like plastered hooligans at a soccer match, could quickly and without warning hit us over the head with a break and make humanity a thing of the past. Earthquakes, super storms, exploding stars, and rocketing space debris have all had our name on them from the beginning! From deep freezes that created ice deserts to comets that almost ended the world, here are some of the worst natural disasters we narrowly avoided.

16 Times Natural Disasters Almost Ended the World,

The Laki Volcano Erupted and Nearly Wiped Out Agriculture

Volcanoes seem to be a strong argument that our planet is the equivalent of an angsty teenager: moody, unpredictable, and plagued by pimples that can take out entire continents. The 1783 eruption of Laki, on Iceland, might as well have been a screaming match about curfews. Only instead of slamming doors, close to quarter of the Icelandic population may have been killed off. 

The cataclysmic eruption occurred around June 8 and lasted for eight months, spewing lava and ash along a range a little over 14 miles (23 km) out of many volcanic vents rather than a single volcano. While the eruption wasn't the largest in recorded history, the amount of material ejected had a far more lasting impact than other volcanoes. 

In Iceland alone, the eight mega-tonnes of sulfur dioxide and fluorine that were released stayed relatively close to the earth's surface and mixed with vapor in the air to cause acid rain. Other gases were heavier and collected on grass, trees, plants, and crops, asphyxiating livestock and humans alike. It's estimated that close to a quarter of the Icelandic population died of the resulting famine and disease caused by the eruption. Because of the effects of the eruption and successive gases released, the entire northern hemisphere experienced colder temperatures and the haze left over from sulfur and fluorine. 

The Inuit people, Russian explorers, continental Europeans, and even the Chinese give several repots from the time of colder temperatures and a gas haze. 

Had the eruption taken place in a part of the world with a higher population or in a major breadbasket, like Ukraine, the immediate and long term effects could have been far worse for the entire world. 

An Ice Age Cornered Humans in South Africa on the Brink of Extinction

At the ever-contested crossroads of religion and science lies an apocalyptic event 195,000 years ago that brought all humanity and possibly all life on earth to the brink of extinction. 

According to Niall Firth of the Daily Mail, an ice age expanded down to as far as South Africa, blanketing forests, grasslands, and vital water sources in sheets of ice and snow until it cornered humans up against the South African coast and halted before it began to recede.

Firth emphasizes that Prof. Curtis Marean of Arizona State University found evidence of human habitation in caves of an area now known as Pinnacle Point. He believes that the human race was reduced to several hundred reproducing individuals and that all modern humans today descend from those isolated individuals and several other small populations in what are now Morocco and Ethiopia. 

While the situation our ancestors found themselves in was critical, the silver lining was that the area in which they were cornered is considered a Garden of Eden because of the variety and plentiful availability of edible plants, game, and the ocean all within close proximity.

It's nothing short of a miracle that the coast of South Africa is where humans were trapped and able to survive rather than in an area with fewer resources. Otherwise, our species may have not rebounded.

The Shaanxi Earthquake Was the Most Destructive Seismic Activity Ever Recordered

Our modern world enjoys the luxury and security of global communication, advanced medical technology, fast and efficient air transportation, and the ability to accurately monitor weather and geological events. We're lucky, and naturally many of us might take it for granted. However, what would likely be a contained local disaster today could have been a catastrophe with the potential to set off more disasters just a few hundred years ago. 

In 1556 in Shaanxi, which is now part of the central People's Republic of China, the largest and most destructive earthquake in recorded history struck the southern part of the province in an area known as Huaxian (according to records of the time) on January 23rd. The magnitude-8 quake resulted in the death and injury of over 830,000 people. It is also reported, though not confirmed, that entire mountains crumbled under the strength of the quake even though it lasted only seconds. 

The locals who lived through the ordeal began rebuilding Shaanxi by constructing houses and other structures with bamboo and lightweight or more resilient materials. It's believed that this is the only known earthquake that was strong and sudden enough to even alter the course of some rivers in the area. 

Today, a terrible event like the Shaanxi earthquake could be handled well and perhaps destruction and death would be reduced, but in 1556, a force of that magnitude could have caused out-of-control fires, further quakes, and released gases and lava or perhaps even tsunamis with no way of preparing or handling them. 

The Jose Barilla Comet of 1883 Just Missed Earth

For thousands of years, people have gazed in wonder at the majestic beauty of the cosmos. Philosophers, writers, religious leaders, and star-crossed lovers all immortalized themselves referring to the stars. Little did they know that some of these heavenly bodies were coming straight for us!

In 1883, at the Zacatecas Observatory in Mexico, astronomer Jose Bonilla caught sight of a comet in August of that year. Unsure of exactly what it was that he was observing, Bonilla reported his findings to a French newspaper, L'Astronomie, three years later. At the time it was believed that dust or debris was just covering his lens, but modern analysis is painting a more grim picture. 

Hector Manterola of the National Autonomous University in Mexico believes that what Bonilla saw was a collection of pieces of a large comet, all of which had come very close to earth. He and his fellow scientists believe that the smaller pieces were part of one large comet roughly a billion tonnes in mass now known as the Bonilla Comet.

When Manterola and other scientists used parallax calculations (that is, comparing how an object looks when viewed from different directions), they confidently concluded that the comet and its smaller fragments were as close as 600 kilometers above the earth. Furthermore, they were sure that if the fragments alone had made contact with the earth, human extinction could have occurred.

A Stone Age Supernova Star Exploded and Singed the Planet

Did British rock band Oasis know something the rest of us didn't when they released Champagne Supernova? Whether they are magical shape-shifters who traveled through time and space to warn us about intergalactic threats, we'll never know, but there is mounting evidence that 340,000 years ago, a star exploded and radiation collided with earth, disrupting our ozone layer. 

The Type II supernova left a gas bubble hovering very close to our solar system, as was discovered in 1972 by Italian astronomers, chiefly Dr. Giovanni Bignami. The modern astronomical community agrees that the effect of the initial explosion and the radiation reaching earth was felt by our ancestors as a sunburn. According to Dr. Jules P. Halpern of Columbia University, what can be observed today is a small neutron star, all that remains of what was once an explosion that dwarfed our own sun in comparison. 

Had the supernova, its collapse and explosion been closer, it would have had a devastating effect on all life and destroyed twenty percent of the earth's atmosphere.

Mount Tambora Erupted, Kicking Off the Year Without Summer

The brobdinagian effect that an isolated geological event can have on the entire world is fascinating and frightening. Thankfully, while it did happen in 1815, we're all still here. For now. 

Mount Tambora was destructive both during its eruption and afterward. In the immediate aftermath, the volcano's eruption and subsequent tsunamis took the lives of 10,000 Indonesian people. While this in itself is heartbreaking, the lingering effects that the eruption caused have been studied ever since. 

The Year Without Summer, known 'round the world as a result of the Tambora Explosion, was an event where snow fell during the summer months as far away as New England in the United States and crucial crops were killed off.

According to Smithsonian Magazine,

In Europe and Great Britain, far more than the usual amount of rain fell in the summer of 1816. It rained nonstop in Ireland for eight weeks. The potato crop failed. Famine ensued... After hunger came disease. Typhus broke out in Ireland late in 1816, killing thousands, and over the next couple of years spread through the British Isles.

The cold, dark year on the east coast of the United States pushed many to relocate out west, shifting the nation's population centers. In Virginia, it snowed on the Fourth of July.

Additionally, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein was dreamt up as a result of Ms. Shelley being stuck indoors because of the abnormal weather patterns outside during summer. 

While the immediate explosion wasn't a direct threat to remote areas of our world, the steam-rolling ash and gas mixing within the atmosphere, causing acid rain and reducing temperatures, came dangerously close to plunging us into permanent famine.

The 2012 Solar Storm Missed Humanity by a Week

Movies and TV are escapist fun: it's why we flock to them, especially all those apocalypse and natural disaster movies from the 1990s and early 2000s. But the real thing is far from a laughing matter.

In 2014, NASA confirmed that two years prior, in July 2012, a solar storm more powerful than any in over a hundred years almost hit our planet. Known as a CME, or coronel mass ejection, a solar storm or solar flare is ultraviolet radiation and X-rays followed by clouds of magnetized plasma ejecting from the sun. In our case, this dangerous combination could have reached Earth at light speed.

Specialists at NASA believe it would take about a full day for this kind of storm to reach us. Then, upon contact, all of our electrical grids and anything relying on them would be fried, setting us back several hundred years as far as technology is concerned. This is in addition to what it could potentially do to biological life forms and the environment. An earth-wide blackout.

According to Daniel Baker, a physicist at the University of Colorado, "If it had hit we would still be picking up the pieces," and according to The Washington Post, if the solar flare had happened a week earlier, our planet would have been in the storm's direct trajectory.

Siberia's Tunguska Meteor Would Have Destroyed a More Populated Place

The Siberian taiga is sparsely populated, with some areas being remote they're accessibly only by helicopter. Once there, one of the most unsettling experiences you can have is walking through a petrified forest of trees felled by something other than humans. This is the site of the Podkamennaya Tunguska Explosion. 

The year is 1908. Russia has lost a war against Imperial Japan (three years prior) and experienced a failed popular revolution that ended in blood. Meanwhile, above the river Tunguska, an explosion tears through the sky with enough power to shred timber on the ground in all directions - timber that is still visible to this day.

Even now and more so a century and change ago, the remoteness of the Siberian Taiga makes visiting the area difficult, but the limited observations and study of the phenomenon strongly support the possibility that a comet burned up in the atmosphere and exploded above the area. Because of the nature of ballistics, the blast pressure forced towards earth brushed trees, flora, and fauna aside with ease and left what is essentially an open field to this day. Leonid Kulik was the first person to survey the site in 1921 and discovered that there was no crater. 

Based on the very limited information available, it is believed that the meteor was roughly sixty meters across and exploded around ten miles above the earth's surface. 

It is a miraculous stroke of luck that the Tunguska explosion occurred over the Siberian taiga where very few people live and not over a major metropolitan area. 

The Toba Supervolcano Pushed Humans to Near-Extinction

Thousands of years ago, Earth buried the most destructive volcano ever known to exist. But it still lurks...

Thankfully for the human species and perhaps all life on Earth, the Toba Supervolcano is now submerged under a lake on the Indonesian island of Sumatra - so we're safe for now. 

However, 70,000 years ago, a level-8 cataclysmic explosion erupted from Toba, spewing 2,800 cubic kilometers of of ash, rock, and magma. Science writer Sam Kean theorizes that the eruption's cloud of ash blocked out the sun for several years; temperatures dropped dramatically; grasslands, big game, and types of fruit disappeared. All of this reduced the relatively small human population to around 5,000 individuals who had to experience another Ice Age for quite some time.

The Chelyabinsk Meteor Could Have Ended Human Civilization

Speaking about the distant past often lulls us into a false sense of security by thinking that if something happened in the past, it won't happen again. The simple fact is that constant danger has always been a reality of life and always will be.

Enter the Chelyabinsk Meteor. On February 15, 2013, a meteor large and close enough to temporarily block out sunlight rocketed towards earth and exploded above Chelyabinsk, Russia, just north of Kazakhstan. 

With a blast concussion stronger than a nuclear warhead, according to Elizabeth Howell of Space.com, the pressure knocked out windows, injured close to 1,200 people without direct impact and was detected as far away as Antarctica. 

Imagine what could have happened if it had made direct contact with the earth's surface in a heavily populated area!

Fri, 07 Oct 2016 06:42:23 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/natural-disasters-that-almost-ended-the-world/daveesons
<![CDATA[20 Unbelievable Aftermath Pictures of the Worst Floods Throughout History]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/historical-pictures-of-floods/jordan-love?source=rss

There's just something about natural disasters that people find tragically fascinating. From Vietnam to New Orleans, pictures from around the world capture the majesty and destructive force of floodwaters.

Hurricanes or tsunamis cause some floods, others simply occur after copious amount of rainfall. Whatever the reason, certain parts of the world have to deal with severe flooding on a yearly basis. Places like southern Asia and the American South are highly represented when it comes to historical pictures of floods because they see significant flooding almost every year. 

On rare occasions, there are floods of things other than water. Take the Great Molasses Flood of 1919 for example. It covered the streets of Boston in sticky molasses, killing several people in the process.

Some of these historical photos of floods are quite old, others are from more recent history. Either way, they are fascinating for the floods they depict. Vote up your favorite crazy flood pictures below. 

20 Unbelievable Aftermath Pictures of the Worst Floods Throughout History,

Flooding From Hurrican Carol in 1954

The Great Mississippi Flood of 1927

A Flood of Dust and Dirt Buried Everything in Its Path During the Dust Bowl in 1936

Debris Flow From Caraballeda Flooding in 1999

1936 Potomac River Flood

With the Capitol Building visible in the top right of the image.

Beach Homes Destroyed by Flooding From Hurricane Sandy in 2012

Rowing Through City Streets After the 1910 Paris Flood

Boston's Great Molasses Flood of 1919

Nepalese Flooding in 2013 Eroded Away The Hillside

Square Trousseau During the 1910 Flooding of Paris

Thu, 15 Sep 2016 03:03:10 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/historical-pictures-of-floods/jordan-love
<![CDATA[The Most Essential Things to Stock in Your Bomb Shelter]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/bomb-shelter-essentials/jakebaumgart?source=rss

You may think you have your home pretty well stocked - comfy couch, new TV, and a freezer full of pizza bagels. Sure, that may be all you need to get through a normal week, but what happens when the power goes out, the government collapses, and the starving hoards arrive at your door? You're going to need supplies. The items on this list are the most important thing you need to turn your rec room into a survival shelter!

What do you need to survive a bug in situation? For some background, a "bug in" is any dangerous scenario where you have to stay inside your home for a prolonged period of time, and when normal resources are scarce. This could be anything from a serious storm to an all-out zombie invasion. These items will make sure that you not only survive, but thrive. Real survivors always have plans for any situation.

Some of the items you'll need in your fallout or underground shelter kits might already be in your home! Everyone should have, at bare minimum, some working flashlights and a stocked first aid kit. After that, you can think about moving up to some of the bigger ticket items like a HAM radio, propane heater, or gas mask.

Many of the items on this list aren’t even specialty items- you can pick them up at your local grocery store. Do you already have a surplus of food and water tucked away? How about a few extra cans of gas in case there is another shortage? Things like this are easy to come by and could make the difference between life and death.

So hunker down and pay attention! Fallout shelters aren't complete without these life-saving items.

The Most Essential Things to Stock in Your Bomb Shelter,

Inevitably, things will break. It doesn't matter how much money you sink into this project, there is always some aspect that will need repairing. It's important to keep a fully-stocked tool kit nearby so that you can get the work and get your shelter up and running again!
A Camping Stove
If space is at a premium in your shelter or home, then consider a small camping stove for your cooking solution. These larger model camp stoves can be purchased at almost any major retailer and utilize the plentiful camping propane canisters. 
Dehydrated Food
You're definitely going to get sick of eating can after can of beans and pie filling. So adding some dehydrated camp meals to your stockpile is smart. Not only do they offer variety, but they store incredibly easy and last a long time.

Canned and Packaged Foods
This is your cheapest and easiest way to store food when the world is on the brink of destruction. Just make sure you pay attention to expiration dates and rotate out your stock!
Bottled Water
The most important supply you need to have stashed away is a surplus of water. When the grid goes down, there is no guarantee that water will be running to your home. In fact, even if it is, it might not be safe to drink! Water is one of your most precious of resources!
First Aid
A first aid kit is one of the most important (and overlooked) items in a home or bomb shelter. Not only do you want to be prepared for scrapes and scratches, but you want to be knowledgeable on how to treat larger injuries. A well-stocked first aid kit is one of the most important things you can own - even if the world isn't ending.

A Bug Out Bag
Pack a backpack with all the necessities for surviving on foot for three days. Supplies should include a way to make shelter, food, water, and tools.
Seeds and Animals
Preppers getting ready for a complete disaster situation should stock these in order to rebuild their food supply from scratch. Keeping a stash of seeds and maybe some small farm animals  will assure long-term survival. 
How are you going to see at night with no power grid to rely on? There are tons of lighting solutions out there. A little bit of research will guide you to the right choice for your shelter. 
It's a sad fact, but in a major disaster, you might have to protect yourself and your group from raiders or there desperate survivors. Although a lot of doomsday preppers harbor a Rambo-like fantasy involving their cache of weapons, it is true that weapons will become important. You may even need to hunt down some food with them.

Thu, 30 Jul 2015 06:01:08 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/bomb-shelter-essentials/jakebaumgart
<![CDATA[The Worst California Wildfires in History]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/worst-california-wildfires/mike-rothschild?source=rss
California wildfires have been among the most destructive in American history, and with the state in the teeth of a prolonged drought, they're only getting more numerous and more dangerous. Every fire season, from late summer until fall, seems to bring more blazes, more acres destroyed, and more money spent battling them. Things are getting so bad that the very idea of "fire season" is becoming an anachronism.

But wildfires aren't a new phenomenon, with massive blazes going back to the founding of the state, including maybe the worst ever in terms of acres burned, the Santiago Canyon Fire, taking place in 1889. Since then, advances in firefighting technology and tactics have made fires easier to contain, but often at terrible costs in lives, such as during several fires in the '50s and '60s. The deadliest fires often happen because of a combination of large fires, scorching hot weather, changes in wind direction, and the terrain the fire is spreading into.

Even with the hot, dry weather, and numerous warnings to not start fires in vulnerable areas, fires break out. Sometimes it's an act of nature, such as a lightning strike causing forest fires - but other times it's arson or carelessness. These incidents are harshly prosecuted, with the arsonist behind one of the most deadly fires in California history receiving the death penalty.

Here are the worst fires in California history, ranked first by number of lives lost, then by acres.

The Worst California Wildfires in History,

1991 Oakland firestorm
Date: October 1991
Cause: Brushfire
Acreage burned: 1,520
Deaths: 25
The costliest fire in California history began as a simple brush fire in the backyard of a home in a suburban Oakland community. Embers from the extinguished fire hit dried out ground and sparked a fire that raced through the Berkeley Hills, with embers being blown by strong winds around the area, starting more small fires that eventually merged. The dry air, closely packed wooden houses on steep hills, and high canyon walls whipped up strong winds and temperatures that eventually hit an astounding 2,000 degrees. The fire was so powerful that ash blew all the way across the bay into Candlestick Park, where an NFL game was being played.

When the wind finally shifted, firefighters were able to put the blazes out. But 25 people were killed, 150 were injured, 2,500 houses were destroyed, and over $1.5 billion in damage was done.

Rattlesnake Fire
Date: July 1953
Cause: Arson
Acreage burned: 1,340
Deaths: 15
Arsonist Stan Pattan started several small fires in Mendocino National Forest, and while one was quickly contained, the other spread quickly. While that fire was eventually contained, a small spot fire started near the firefighters' campground, which quickly burned while the men were taking a dinner break. The firefighters made a run for it, but most were killed by the fast moving blaze.

The fire changed how forest fires were handled, and led to a number of improvements in tactics. Pattan was eventually caught and sent to prison for several years.

Laguna Fire
Date: September 1970
Cause: Downed power lines
Acreage burned: 175,000
Deaths: 8
In September and October of 1970, California was hit by a vicious spate of wildfires, the worst of which was the Laguna Fire. High winds knocked down power lines in eastern San Diego County, and within a day, the fire had advanced 30 miles west, destroying multiple communities in its path. Firefighting efforts were hampered by the continued high winds, grounding all aircraft but one, flown by a Canadian pilot gone rogue. Over three weeks, the fire destroyed nearly 400 homes and killed eight people. Afterward, the devastation prompted Congress to establish a system allowing military aircraft to fight civilian fires – which is still in place today.

Old Fire
Date: October 2003
Cause: Arson
Acreage burned: 91,000
Deaths: 6
Another of the massive spate of fall 2003 fires, which included the Cedar Fire, the Old Fire was smaller, but extremely deadly. It began when arsonist Rickie Lee Fowler threw a lit flare out of a moving car into a pile of dry growth. The fire sparked quickly, then merged with a number of other fires, forming a massive blaze. Five people died in the blaze, with another suffering a fatal heart attack during the evacuation. Dozens of homes burned and a number of large communities were threatened by the blaze before it was contained by firefighters helped by a large snow storm.

Fowler was arrested in 2009 and charged with arson and six counts of murder. After a recanted confession and a trial, Fowler was found guilty and sentenced to death. Tragically, the ground stripped of vegetation was hit with a massive storm, causing a mudslide that killed 14 people.

Inaja Fire
Date: November 1956
Cause: Arson
Acreage burned: 44,000
Deaths: 11
A boy from a local Indian tribe made the unfathomable decision to throw a match into dry grass to see if it would burn. It did, and the fire quickly spread due to hot wind and drought conditions. It burned 25,000 acres within a day, and resisted all efforts to put it out. The next day, as a group of “fellers” were cutting trees to make a firebreak, the fire jumped up and hit a patch of gas tanks. The explosion and fireball killed 11 men – and led to a complete overhaul of firefighting techniques, including the creation of the “10 Standard Orders” of forest fire fighting.

Witch Creek Fire
Date: October 2007
Cause: Downed power lines
Acreage burned: 197,000
Deaths: 2
California’s October 2007 wildfire season was one of the worst on record at that point, and the worst of these fires was the Witch Creek Fire (sometimes just called the Witch Fire), in remote Western San Diego County. It began when high Santa Ana winds knocked down a power line, igniting brush that was dried out from drought conditions.

The fire jumped over Interstate 15 and quickly headed west, where it merged with another fire, threatening the entire San Diego region. 500,000 residents had to be evacuated, and numerous major roads were closed. By the time it was contained, nearly 1,600 homes and buildings were destroyed, and two people were killed. A fire near the Witch Fire, the Harris Fire, burned less area, but killed 8 people, including four firefighters.

Loop Fire
Date: August 1966
Cause: Downed power line 
Acreage burned: 2,200
Deaths: 12
A small fire in terms of acreage, the Loop Fire was one of the deadliest to California firefighters, with 12 men killed battling the blaze. It started when a power line sparked dry grass near Pacoima Dam, and burned so hot that huge clouds of smoke drifted into the San Fernando Valley. When a crew of firefighters entered a narrow canyon to contain it, the wind shifted and brought the fire right on top of them.

The lessons learned from the Loop Fire included better use of communications gear and a greater understanding of how canyons can trap and push superheated gas.

Cedar Fire
Date: October - December 2003
Cause: Signal fire in dry wood
Acreage burned: 273,246
Deaths: 15
The Cedar Fire is considered to be the largest and most destructive in California history. It broke out in Cleveland National Forest in central San Diego County, on October 25, when novice hunter Sergio Martinez became lost, and rather than shout for help (which would have scared away animals) he started a signal fire.

The blaze quickly grew out of control, and within a few hours had burned 5,000 acres. Errors in the initial response, compounded by the dryness of the surrounding area, led the fire to explode to 62,000 acres with 10 hours of it breaking out. It moved so quickly that residents in nearby Wildcat Canyon had no time to escape, and 12 people were killed almost instantly – with three firefighters killed a few days later. Within a day it had expanded 30 miles and 100,000 acres, and was threatening San Diego two days later. Airports in both San Diego and Los Angeles were badly disrupted by the smoke, and air travel across the country was snarled.

The Cedar Fire was finally contained on November 5, but continued to burn in some areas for another month. To the outrage of local residents, Sergio Martinez was given only supervised work and a relatively small fine.

Iron Alps Complex Fire
Date: August 2008
Cause: Lightning
Acreage burned: 108,000
Deaths: 10
A lightning strike set the Shasta-Trinity National Forest in Northern California ablaze. Since the location was fairly remote, firefighters had to be flown in via helicopter. Sadly, one of these flights crashed, killing 10 men on board and badly injuring several others. The fires in the Iron Alps complex burned for several days before being contained by firefighting crews and weather changes.

Griffith Park Fire
Date: October 1933
Cause: Unknown
Acreage burned: 47
Deaths: 29
A small fire by the standards of the huge wildfires that currently plague California, the 1933 Griffith Park fire was nonetheless the deadliest in California history. Thousands of workers were toiling to build LA’s Griffith Park, mostly clearing brush and debris. A small fire started in a pile of debris and quickly raced through hastily built firebreaks.

There were no firefighters in the area and no pumped water, so the untrained workers tried to beat the fire out with shovels and heavy cloths. This only made the blaze worse, and a botched backfire attempt pushed the fire into a canyon, where it overwhelmed a group of workers. Fire fighters finally arrived, but were hampered by the horde of untrained workers everywhere – and when it was all over, 29 people were dead, and 150 injured.

At the time, the media blamed a Communist arsonist, but the true cause of the disaster was almost certainly the incompetently set backfires meant to contain the initial fire.

Mon, 10 Aug 2015 05:37:34 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/worst-california-wildfires/mike-rothschild
<![CDATA[15 Times the World Was Almost Completely Destroyed]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/times-the-world-almost-got-destroyed/mel-judson?source=rss

These 15 times the world almost ended will shock you to the core, though they thankfully, but narrowly, missed the Earth's core. Armageddon was almost a real-life event both in the olden days of yore and in the 21st century. These near apocalypses, whether due to mechanical failures, miscommunications, natural disasters, and barely avoided cosmic and nuclear events, almost ruined everyone's day at some point in the history of the Earth.

Remember how the Mayan calendar supposedly indicated that the apocalypse was headed for us in 2012? Well, they weren't that far off. As it turns out, a solar superstorm in the summer of 2012 narrowly missed blasting planet Earth. That would've sucked. And that's just one of the many times humanity and all of Earth's creatures have escaped extinction at the last second.

In fact, our planet is no stranger to "the end is near" concerns or real apocalypses, and it wasn't just Y2K. The Black Plague possibly killed as many as 200 million human beings, and you don't even want to hear the numbers when it comes to the Spanish Flu pandemic (that bad boy hit in the early 1900s). From comets, to volcanoes, to accidentally announcing nuclear war and setting off rockets, these are the times that the End of Days was almost just around the corner.
15 Times the World Was Almost Completely Destroyed,

Cuban Missile Crises
The closest we ever came to completely annihilating human existence came during a combination of missteps in 1962. On October 25, an American air base guard activated the wrong alarm, which signaled WWIII from Wisconsin. The next day, America accidentally launched two missile tests in Russia because they had been scheduled before the Crisis began.
Simulation Confused With Reality
The movie War Games is a lot like what actually happened in 1979. The Pentagon thought 1,000 Soviet nukes were headed towards America when an Air Force officer checked out a simulation of exactly that. His computer happened to be hooked up to the mainframe in government control rooms, and the U.S. got ready to launch.
The Black Plague
One of the worst pandemics in the history of civilization, up to 200 million people were killed by the plague. The blame can likely be placed at the feet of Asian rat fleas and black rats that traveled with merchants. Not only was Europe's total population nearly cut in half, but the world population as a whole diminished substantially in the 14th century.
Spanish Flu
The 1918 influenza pandemic infected 500 million people and killed 3-5% of the entire globe's population. One of history's deadliest natural disasters killed 10-40% of those it infected and may have taken the lives of 25 million individuals over just 25 weeks. It topped the charts, killing more humans in one year than the Black Death in 100 years and killed more in 24 weeks than AIDS did in 24 years.
Yeltsin Almost Nukes America
The year was 1995 and the Cold War was over. But when Russia saw what looked exactly like a U.S. ballistic missile on its way, President Boris Yeltsin opened a briefcase with the nuclear codes for the first time. With ten minutes to figure out whether or not to nuke America, Yeltsin ultimately (and fortunately) got word that it was a science experiment he hadn't been warned about.
1950 Broken Arrow
"Broken Arrow" is a code name for a nuclear incident, which is exactly what happened in August of 1950. During the Korean War, a B-29 headed for Guam crashed at a California Air Base. The result? 5,000 pounds of explosives were detonated, 19 people died, and if the bomb had been armed with its fissile capsule, which thankfully it wasn't, potentially 100,000 people could have been killed
1961 Faded Giant
Idaho Falls almost blew itself up when an SL-1 reactor went off and caused a nuclear disaster. Emergency officials could not go into the control room because of absurdly high radiation levels. When they did, they found three victims, one of whom was pinned to the ceiling and impaled by a control rod due to the explosion.
NORAD Says Armageddon Is Nigh
In the winter of 1971, a teletype operator stuffed the wrong tape into an alert system machine. So, instead of saying "this is only a test," it said that the president of the United States was about to broadcast an emergency alert. 45 terrifying minutes later, NORAD realized their error, but one radio DJ said they were considering billing the agency "for three sets of underwear."
2012 Solar Storm
In the summer of 2012, a massive cloud of hot plasma erupted from the sun and went through our planet's orbit. Had it happened a single week earlier, Earth would have had GPS errors, radio blackouts, and fried satellites. In fact, resulting power blackouts would have been so bad that most of us would have had trouble flushing the toilet.
Comet Hyakutake
The Great Comet of 1996 was great in size but the opposite of great in potential effect. It was the closest approach to Earth of any comet in the previous 200 years. Amateur astronomer Yuji Hyakutake saw it approaching us, leading astronomers to notice X-rays being emitted from a comet for the first time ever.

Sat, 01 Nov 2014 14:44:21 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/times-the-world-almost-got-destroyed/mel-judson
<![CDATA[The Best Tsunami Movies]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-tsunami-movie/lanayoshii?source=rss
Tsunamis create vast destruction to so many communities. And they can provide great themes for disaster movies. Which tsunami-themed films are the coolest to watch?
The Best Tsunami Movies,

Atlantis: The Lost Empire

Deep Impact

The Perfect Storm

The Poseidon Adventure


Tidal Wave


The Impossible

The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom

Fri, 24 Oct 2014 14:45:00 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/best-tsunami-movie/lanayoshii
<![CDATA[The Best Tornado Movies]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-tornado-movie/lanayoshii?source=rss
Tornadoes can be terrifying. In movies, they can be even worse. Which tornado-themed films are the most enjoyable to watch?
The Best Tornado Movies,

Category 6: Day of Destruction

Category 7: The End of the World

The Day After Tomorrow

The Perfect Storm

The Wizard of Oz

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All Is Lost
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Into the Storm

Sharknado 2: The Second One

Fri, 24 Oct 2014 14:35:22 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/best-tornado-movie/lanayoshii
<![CDATA[Stuff You'd Save if Your House Was Burning Down]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/stuff-youd-save-if-your-house-was-burning-down/ariel-kana?source=rss
The miracle of fire captivated early humans and gave them the power to cook food. But all too often, the fiery flames turn on us, destroying homes and buildings. If a fire hit your house, what would you save before making your grand escape? When flames start burning down the house, what will you reach for?

This list of stuff you'd save if your house was burning down will help you prioritize your favorite and most valuable possessions. Are selfies more important than self-help books? Do you need your beauty products more than your pills? Who do you love more: your kitten or your lover? (Until you're in the heat of the moment – pardon the pun – do you really know?)  Which fabulous outfit do you want the hot firemen to see you in? These are the big, life-changing questions you'll face amid the flames.

So what would you save if your house was burning to ashes? Vote up the stuff you'd be most likely to grab while fleeing from a house fire. With any luck, you'll live a life free of house fires, but it's much better to be prepared. 
Stuff You'd Save if Your House Was Burning Down,

My Personal Toys (Don't Judge)
"You saved a toy box? But you don't have any kids," the neighbors might say when you exit your burning home, "toy" box in hand. Ignore them. Save whatever "toys" you might have, and make your post-inferno life one of pleasure.
My Furry Little Loved One
Spot and Fluffy have such short legs – how will they ever escape on their own?! They're your special little buddies and must be saved. If they're gone, your world just won't be the same. And, without them around, you'd have to find something else to post pictures of on Instagram.
My Pill Collection
Some are legit prescriptions, others might not be exactly genuine, but all are essential to your mental stability. If you've ever needed some little yellow pills it's now, so keep them close and the green, blue, red, white, orange, and purple ones even closer.
My Collection of Selfies
You didn't snap these hot pics for them to NOT be seen. Don't deprive the world of your best duck faces – get back in that burning house and salvage what you can from your selfie shelf. We know you've got one.

My Favorite Outfits (Of Course!)
You're definitely the Carrie of your friends - the fashionista with a wardrobe that rivals that of the entire "Sex and the City" cast. Don't leave your favorite looks to smolder in the ashes of your once-majestic closet. Save at least a few outfits so you have something fabulous to wear to meetings with the insurance agent. And if your fire is big enough, there may be media outside...always have a hot outfit to go at the ready!

My Video Collection
Whether your collection resides on hard drives or you've still got the old school VHS tapes laying around, you've definitely got all sorts of very important recordings in your video collection. Some are sentimental recordings of your kids' birthday parties, some are (ahem) less kid-friendly. In any case, they must be saved, after all VHS tapes simply can't be replaced, and, at last check, burnt up hard drives are pretty useless.

My Wine Bottle Opener (Holla!)
Look, just because your house burned down doesn't mean you won't want (need?) a nice bottle of wine to get through the trauma. Be sure you grab the corkscrew on your way through the flames, otherwise, what will you drink? Hello... priorities!

All the Products I Need to Look Like This
What's hotter than fire? You are. But it's a process. There are necessary tools and top-secret beauty tricks that only you have. And that lipstick was just discontinued! Make sure you grab your beauty kit so you can emerge from the flames, hotter than ever.
The Gifts My Sweetie Gave Me
What's more important than true love? The gifts you demand from your significant other as proof that they do, in fact, love you. Because how do you show love if not through lavish gifts? Before the house becomes ashes, make sure you save all the jewelry, heart shaped candy boxes, love letters, special mementos and giant teddy bears that serve as proof of your loving relationship.
My Fabulous Undies (You Go Girl!)
Girl's gotta look her best, even in the wake of a natural disaster, right? Right. Save the undies. You never know what kinds of hot firemen you might meet. Or perhaps there will be a hot Good Samaritan out there who stopped to help, a hot news reporter covering the event.... you just never know!

Wed, 05 Mar 2014 07:45:26 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/stuff-youd-save-if-your-house-was-burning-down/ariel-kana
<![CDATA[The Worst Sinkhole Disasters of All Time]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/worst-sinkhole-disasters-of-all-time/coy-jandreau?source=rss
A sinkhole, also known as a swallow hole, shake hole, swallet, or doline, is a depression or hole caused by a collapse of the surface layer of the earth. Sinkholes can range from just one meter (swallowing up a single person walking by on the street) up to hundreds of kilometers, taking out entire cities. They can happen naturally by wind or water erosion, or artificially due to people mining and drilling in unsafe areas.

Whichever the case and whatever the cause, people notice. It's a literal force of nature and it can be terrifying. Though some are later turned into a nice vacation spot. They happen all over the world, on both continents and islands. Below are the worst sinkhole disasters of all time, ranked by users. Vote up the disaster you think was the worst, and keep an eye on the earth beneath you.
The Worst Sinkhole Disasters of All Time,

Agrico Gypsum Stack
The worst sinkhole in Florida history occurred when a 15 story hole opened up right beneath an 80 million ton pile of gypsum stack. This dumped between 4 and 6 million cubic feet of toxics and waste water into the Florida aquifer... which stores 90% of Florida's drinking water.
Guatemala City Sinkhole
The people of a Guatemala City had been hearing strange sounds for weeks when suddenly, in late February 2007, an almost perfect circle sinkhole opened up 300 feet of earth beneath them! That's nearly the size of the Statue of Liberty but... DOWN. Unfortunately three people were killed and over one thousand had to be evacuated.
Brazilian Port Sinkhole
Not much is known about this incident in Brazil other than an ENTIRE PORT was swept away in a matter of minutes, causing untold dollars in damages and a permanent end to that Port.
San Diego Split
This monstrous divide opened up in March of 1998 severing several major throughways and effectively crippling traffic (and business) to many local towns. The first man to come across it inadvertently drove his Honda right into the sinkhole, luckily with no permanent injuries (except the loss of car). Another couple drove into it but were able to leap out at the last minute.
San Francisco Sinkhole
In 1996 this sinkhole opened up under a heavily populated area in San Francisco, it was caused by a heavy rainstorm that destroyed a 100 year old sewer system under the city. Fortunately there were no fatalities, but this did occur in a nice part of town completely destroying a mansion and damaging several nearby homes.
Brazil City Block Sink Hole
In January of 2014, a sinkhole took out an area, and all of the stores and homes in it, almost the size of an entire city block in a small town North of Rio, Brazil.
Devil's Sinkhole
Located in Rocksprings, Texas, this 40 by 60 foot sinkhole is about 400 feet deep and is the home to thousands of Mexican Free Tailed bats. Though it was initially destructive to the town, costing thousands in damages, they have made it into quite the tourist destination due the sheer quantity of bats, and the size of the sinkhole. It takes anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour to for the bats to completely empty the sinkhole when they fly out for the night.
An entire trading and fortress city in the Arabian peninsula was swallowed up 5,000 years ago when it's underground water system (ironically the very thing that made it such a thriving city) gave way and swallowed up the entire city. It's been compared in scope to Los Angeles just falling into the earth. The Lost City of Ubar is known as the "Atlantis of the Sands."
Berezniki Sinkhole
This sinkhole in the Russian city of Berezniki is ENORMOUS and approaching its 30th birthday. It started in 1986 and has been growing every year. As of 2012, it was 340 yards wide, 430 yards long, and 780 feet deep. It's slowly consuming the entire city.

Hurricane Agatha Guatemala City Sinkhole
Disaster struck Guatemala City again when, less than 2 kilometers from one the sinkhole that opened up in 2007, another sinkhole swallowed an entire three story building. The ground collapsed more than 300 feet and 15 people were killed. 

Tue, 08 Apr 2014 11:14:41 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/worst-sinkhole-disasters-of-all-time/coy-jandreau
<![CDATA[10 Things To Know About Tornadoes]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/10-things-to-know-about-tornadoes/analise.dubner?source=rss
Many of us have seen the kind of insane power a tornado can wield on TV, and a few of us have even lived through one of these twisters. These storms possess an almost god-like presence in the media and our minds - dramatic, deafening columns that descend from the sky and obliterate everything in their path. But what are the essentials you need to know about tornadoes?

We still don't know as much about these killer storms as we'd like, but what we've learned in the past 60 years has brought us a lot closer to hopefully, one day, being able to detect them in time to save more lives. This is a list that tries to break down the facts and data we have learned about tornadoes. Most of the info was sourced by Wikipedia and countless weather sites, storm chasers, and news sites.

Read through the list below to get educated about tornadoes and check out this list of the worst tornadoes in history to see the damage these scary storms can do.
10 Things To Know About Tornadoes,

Tornado Alley
There is no specific line to draw around the so-called Tornado Alley in the US. It's a term for a fairly large, general area. Ninety percent of tornadoes hit this region of the US because cold, dry air from Canada and the Rocky Mountains meets warm, moist air from the Gulf of Mexico and hot, dry air from the Sonoran Desert, which causes atmospheric instability, heavy precipitation, and many intense thunderstorms.The core of Tornado Alley consists of northern Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas. But, it can also include the area reaching from central Texas to the Canadian prairies and from eastern Colorado to western Pennsylvania.

The term "Tornado Alley" was first used in 1952 by US Air Force meteorologists Major Ernest J. Fawbush and Captain Robert C. Miller as the title of a research project to study severe weather in parts of Texas and Oklahoma.
What to Do
In a Home: The most basic rule inside any structure during a tornado is to avoid windows. An exploding window can injure or kill you.The safest place in the home is the interior part of a basement. If there is no basement, go to an inside room, without windows, on the lowest floor. This could be a center hallway, bathroom, or closet. For added protection, get under something sturdy such as a heavy table or workbench. If possible, cover your body with a blanket, sleeping bag, or mattress, and protect your head with anything available - even your hands. Avoid taking shelter where there are heavy objects, such as pianos or refrigerators, on the area of floor that is directly above you. They could fall though the floor if the tornado strikes your house. A bathtub or shower with a fixed glass wall is something to avoid.

When you chose a place in which to take shelter, make sure the objects around you do not have the potential to impale, cut, or crush you when loosened from their moorings.

In a Mobile Home: Mobile homes can turn over and tear apart during strong winds. Even mobile homes with a tie-down system cannot withstand the force of tornado winds. Plan ahead. If you have the opportunity, go to a nearby building, preferably one with a basement. If there is no shelter nearby, lie flat in the nearest ditch, ravine, or culvert and shield your head with your hands. Preferably with something to hold on to.

If you live in a tornado-prone area, encourage your mobile home community to build a tornado shelter.

On the Road or Outdoors: The worst place to be during a tornado is in a car. Cars, buses, and trucks are easily tossed by tornado winds. Do not try to outrun a tornado in your car, even if it's still a mile away. If you see a tornado, stop your vehicle and get out. Do not get under your vehicle. If you cannot seek shelter in a suitable building, find a low-lying area like a ditch. Stay away from trees as they, like cars, easily become deadly projectiles. Lie down flat and try and protect your head.

Public Buildings like Malls or other Long-Span Structures: Shopping malls, theaters, or gymnasiums, are especially dangerous because the roof structure is usually supported solely by the outside walls. These kinds of buildings cannot withstand the enormous pressure that tornadoes deliver. They simply collapse. If you are in a long-span building during a tornado and have no time to evacuate, stay away from windows. Get to the lowest level of the building - the basement or parking structure if possible - and away from any windows. If there is no time to get to a tornado shelter or to a lower level, try to get get up against something that will support or deflect falling debris. Wherever you are, look up to see what might fall on you.  Get under counters or under theater seats. Remember to protect your head.
The 10 Deadliest Tornadoes in World History
1. Daulatpur-Saturia - April 26, 1989 - 1,300 Dead
Likely the deadliest tornado in recorded world history, this storm destroyed everything but a few trees.

2. Tri-State Tornado - March 18, 1925 - 747 Dead
Unlike most historical long-track tornadoes, this was likely a single tornado, not a tornado family. It partially or completely destroyed more than ten towns. Its path length of 219 miles is a world record.

3. Manikganj, Singair and Nawabganj Bangladesh - May 13, 1996 - 700 Dead
The village of Balurchar was completely destroyed, with eight other villages almost totally leveled.

4. Grand Harbour at Valletta Malta - Sept 23, 1551 - 681 Dead
This waterspout destroyed a shipping armada, then moved ashore, causing severe damage.

5. Dhaka Bangladesh -  April 14, 1969 - 660 Dead
This colossal tornado not only killed 660 people, but severely injured hundreds more villagers.
6. Magura and Narail Districts Bangladesh - April 4, 1964 - 500 Dead
Wiped seven villages off the map. The death toll may have been as high as 1,400, but official records conflict. There were no survivors from the village of Bhabanipur, where around 400 people lived.
7. Madaripur and Shibchar Bangladesh - April 1, 1977 - 500 Dead
All the buildings and trees in Madaripur and Shibchar were destroyed.
8. Tupelo Gainsville Tornado - April 5-6, 1936 - 454 Dead
The second deadliest tornado in US history, this was an outbreak of 17 tornados.
9. Ivanovo Tornado Outbreak - June 9, 1984 - 400 Dead
A series of violent supercell thunderstorms that travelled at speeds greater than 50 mph. Local newspapers reported that massive hailstones, some weighing over 2 pounds, fell over the affected areas.
10. Deep South Tornado Outbreak - March 21-22, 1932 - 330 Dead
An outbreak that contained up 36 tornados and reached as far north as Illinois.
Tornado Characteristics
Most tornados take the traditional form of a funnel that descends from a Wall Cloud. However, a tornado can sometimes be shrouded by its storm, making it essentially invisible to the eye and therefore very dangerous. 

Dust Swirls
Sometimes a relatively weak landspout may only be visible as a swirl of dust. Even if the funnel causing the disturbance does not reach the ground, if the wind speeds reach more than 40 mph, it is considered a tornado.

A wedge can be so wide that it appears to be a block of dark clouds, wider than the distance from the cloud base to the ground. Sometimes you can't tell the difference between a low-hanging cloud and a wedge tornado from a distance. Many, but not all, major tornadoes are wedges.

In the dissipating stage, a funnel can resemble a narrow tube or rope, and will often curl or twist into complex shapes. These tornadoes are said to be "roping out," or becoming a "rope tornado." When they rope out, the length of their funnel increases, which forces the winds within the funnel to weaken due to conservation of angular momentum.

In the US, tornadoes are generally around 500 feet across on average and travel on the ground for 5 miles. Weak tornadoes, however, or strong yet dissipating tornadoes, can be very narrow, sometimes only a few feet across. One tornado was reported to have a damage path only 7 feet long while on the other side of the spectrum, wedge tornadoes can have a damage path a mile or more wide. 

Some tornadoes, like the Tri-State Tornado in 1925, travel long distances. Tornadoes like that one, which can go for more than 100 miles are usually composed of a family of tornadoes which have formed in quick succession. The lifespan of a tornado depends on the severity of the atmospheric instability. They can last from 10 minutes to over an hour.

Depending on the environment they travel through, a tornado can be several colors. Those that form in dry places with little loose soil can be nearly invisible, marked only by swirling debris at the base of the funnel. Condensation funnels that pick up little or no debris can be gray to white. While traveling over a body of water, tornadoes can turn very white or even blue. Slow-moving funnels, which ingest a considerable amount of debris and dirt, are usually darker, taking on the color of debris. Tornadoes in the Great Plains can turn red because of the reddish tint of the soil, and tornadoes in mountainous areas can travel over snow-covered ground, turning white.

Tornadoes normally rotate cyclonically (counterclockwise in the northern hemisphere and clockwise in the southern). While large storms always rotate cyclonically due to the Coriolis effect, smaller tornados are not necessarily ruled by the Coriolis effect. Approximately 1 percent of tornadoes rotate in an anticyclonic direction in the northern hemisphere and, typically, systems as weak as landspouts and gustnadoes can rotate anticyclonically. 

Various types of sounds have been reported from witnesses, generally some variation of a whooshing roar. Popularly reported sounds include a freight train, rushing rapids or waterfall, a nearby jet engine, or combinations of these. Funnel clouds and small tornadoes are reported as whistling, whining, humming, or as the buzzing of innumerable bees or electricity, whereas larger tornadoes are reported as a continuous, deep rumbling, or an irregular sound of "noise." Since you can usually only hear a tornado when it is dangerously close, sound is not reliable warning of a tornado. 
Odd Behaviors
Tornado Debris
Tornados are known for the insane things their wind speeds can do. They can wrap a truck around a tree, drive a feather into a telephone pole, or transport a cancelled check 150 miles away. In some cases, tornado-borne debris scours out the ground! One of two EF5 tornadoes in 2011 scoured the ground to a depth of 2 feet!

Tornadoes appear to skip houses
Tornadoes vary in intensity as they move along the ground, sometimes significantly. If a tornado was causing damage, then weakened to the point where it could cause no damage, followed by a re-intensification, it would appear as if it "skipped" a section of its path. Occasionally with very violent tornadoes, a small suction vortex will completely destroy a structure next to another building which appears almost unscathed and apparently "skipped." The presence of multiple vortices, highly volatile tornadic satellites which orbit the parent tornado at high speeds, are responsible for causing enormous damage right next an area that takes none.

Bigger doesn't always mean stronger
Most folks just assume that small, skinny tornadoes are weaker than the scary, large, wedge-shaped tornadoes. While it is true that there is an observable trend of bigger funnels causing worse damage, it is not known if this is due to an actual tendency of tornado dynamics or an ability for the tornado to affect a larger area. Some small, rope-like tornadoes, traditionally thought of as weak, have been among the strongest in history and since 1950, more than 100 super-violent tornadoes had a maximum width of 300 feet. Also, tornadoes typically change shape during the course of their lifespan, further complicating any attempt to classify how dangerous a particular size might be.

Appearing to reach the ground
A tornado doesn't have to look like it's touching the ground to cause damage. It's mistakenly thought that if the funnel of a tornado does not reach the ground, then the tornado cannot cause substantial damage. However, the circular, violent surface winds, not the funnel itself, are what both define the tornado and cause the tornado's damage. The sign of a debris cloud will tell a spotter if the tornado is causing damage, not whether it's touching the ground or not. Plus, some tornadoes can be shrouded in rain and might not even be visible at all.

The Tornado's Path
In the past, it has been assumed that tornadoes moved almost exclusively in a northeasterly direction. Although the majority of tornadoes move northeast, this is normally due to the motion of the storm, and tornadoes can actually arrive from any direction. Additionally, tornadoes can shift without notice due to storm motion changes or effects on the tornado itself from factors such as its rear flank downdraft. Never assume that you know what direction the storm is going.
Myths About Tornadoes
Tornadoes only occur in North America. False.
The majority of tornadoes do occur in the United States. However, tornadoes have been observed on every continent except Antarctica.

Tornadoes don't occur near rivers, valleys, mountains, or other terrain features. False.
No terrain feature can prevent the occurrence of a tornado. They have been observed on terrain as high as 12,000 feet (3,700 m) above sea level, and have been known to pass up a 3,000 foot (910 m) ridge unaffected.

Lakes and rivers are insignificant obstacles to tornadoes. False.
Violent tornadoes have formed over rivers and lakes and have crossed over them after forming elsewhere.

Tornadoes are attracted to mobile homes and/or trailer parks. False.
The idea that mobile homes attract tornadoes has been around for decades. It seems true at first from looking at tornado fatality statistics: from 2000 to 2008, 539 people were killed by tornadoes in the US, with more than half (282) of those deaths in mobile homes. However, it is highly unlikely that single-story structures such as mobile homes can have a substantial effect on tornado development or evolution. The truth is that more people are killed in trailer parks because mobile homes are less able to withstand high winds than permanent structures. In reality they can be shredded by even weak tornadoes. 

Large cities are safe from tornadoes. False.
More than 100 tornadoes have struck downtown areas of large cities in recorded history. Many cities have been struck twice or more, and a few - including Lubbock, Texas; St. Louis, Missouri; Topeka, Kansas; and London, England - have been struck by violent tornadoes. Tornadoes may seem rare in downtown areas because downtown areas cover such a small geographical area. However, this myth has a small basis in truth. Research has been done in a few metropolitan areas suggesting that the urban heat island effect may discourage the formation of weak tornadoes in city centers. This would not apply to strong tornadoes, however.

Tornados can't form in winter. False.
Because they almost always require warm weather to form, tornadoes are uncommon in winter in the mid-latitudes. However, they can form, and tornadoes have even been known to travel over snow-covered surfaces.

Opening windows reduces tornado damage. Absolutely False.
One of the oldest pieces of tornado folklore is the idea that tornadoes do most of their damage due to the lower atmospheric pressure at the center of a tornado, which causes the house to explode outward. The theory is that opening windows helps to equalize the pressure. The source of this myth is from the 'exploded' appearance of some destroyed structures after violent tornadoes. However, in even the most violent tornadoes, there is only a pressure drop of about 10%, which is about 1.4 pounds per square inch. Not only can this difference be equalized in most structures in approximately three seconds, but if a significant pressure differential manages to form, the windows would break first, equalizing the pressure. Opening windows in advance of a tornado wastes time that could be spent seeking shelter. Also, being near windows is very dangerous during a severe weather event, possibly exposing people to flying glass.

You can use highway overpasses as shelter.Usually False.
Because of a few documented cases where people survived under an overpass, the belief has developed that they are safer than structures to shelter in. It turns out that those very-publicized cases were anomalies and, in fact, have led to several deaths because people have left the shelter of their homes to hide under overpasses. Meteorologists, however, insist that overpasses are insufficient shelter from tornado winds and debris, and may be the worst place to be during a violent tornado. The embankment under an overpass is higher than the surrounding terrain, and the wind speed increases with height. Additionally, the overpass design may create a "wind-tunnel" effect under the span, further increasing the wind speed. Many overpasses are completely exposed underneath and most lack hanging girders or a crawlspace-like area to provide sufficient protection from debris, which can travel at high speeds even in weak tornadoes. People stopping underneath overpasses block the flow of traffic, putting others in danger.

You can escape a tornado in a vehicle. Not really a good idea.
Often, people try to avoid or outrun a tornado in a vehicle. In theory, cars can travel faster than the average tornado, and so it is better to avoid the tornado altogether than take shelter in its path. Unlike homes (except in the most violent of tornadoes) cars can be heavily damaged by even weak tornadoes, and in violent tornadoes they can be thrown large distances, even into buildings. High-profile vehicles such as buses and tractor trailers are even more vulnerable to high winds. Some tornadoes actually move faster than cars. Far-away, highly visible tornadoes, however, can be successfully fled from at right angles (90 degrees) from its direction of apparent movement.
Detecting Them
Before the 50s, the only way to detect a tornado was by someone seeing it and going "hey, that looks dangerous!" However, with the invention of weather radar, areas near a local office could get advance warning of severe weather. The first public tornado warnings were issued in 1950 and by 1953 it was confirmed that hook echoes are associated with tornadoes. By recognizing these radar signatures, meteorologists could detect thunderstorms probably producing tornadoes from dozens of miles away.

Today, most developed countries have a network of weather radars, which remains the main method of reading the signs of developing tornadoes. In the US and a few other countries, Doppler weather radar stations are used. These stations measure velocity and radial direction of the winds in a storm, and they can spot signs of rotation in storms from more than a hundred miles away. Strong mesocyclones show up as adjacent areas of yellow and blue (on other radars, bright red and bright green), and usually indicate an imminent or occurring tornado.

In the mid-70s, the US National Weather Service increased its efforts to train storm spotters to spot key features of storms which indicate severe hail, damaging winds, and tornadoes, as well as damage itself and flash flooding. The program was called Skywarn, and the spotters were local sheriff's deputies, state troopers, firefighters, ambulance drivers, amateur radio operators, civil defense spotters, storm chasers, and ordinary citizens. Spotters are usually trained by the NWS and can activate public warning systems such as sirens and the Emergency Alert System, and forward the report to the NWS. The spotter's ability to see what radar cannot is especially important as distance from the radar site increases, because the radar beam becomes progressively higher in altitude further away from the radar, chiefly due to curvature of Earth, and the beam also spreads out.
The Different Types
Supercell tornadoes are the ones most of us are familiar with. They are more likely to remain in contact with the ground for long periods of time (an hour or more) than other tornadoes, and are more likely to be violent, with winds exceeding 200 mph.

Landspout tornadoes are usually weaker than supercells and are not associated with a wall cloud or mesocyclone. They may be observed beneath cumulonimbus or towering cumulus clouds and are the land equivalent of a waterspout. They often form along the leading edge of rain-cooled downdraft air emanating from a thunderstorm, known as a “gust front.”

Gustnados are weak and usually short-lived. They form along the gust front of a thunderstorm, appearing as a temporary dust whirl or debris cloud. There may be no apparent connection to or circulation in the cloud aloft. These appear similar to dust devils.

A waterspout is a tornado over water. A few form from supercell thunderstorms, but many form from weak thunderstorms or rapidly growing cumulus clouds. They form over warm tropical ocean waters, although their funnels are made of freshwater droplets condensed from water vapor due to condensation - not saltwater from the ocean. Waterspouts usually dissipate upon reaching land.

Dust Devils form during dry, hot, clear days on the desert or over dry land. Generally forming in the hot sun during the late morning or early afternoon hours, these mostly harmless whirlwinds are triggered by light desert breezes that create a swirling plume of dust with speeds rarely over 70 mph. They are not associated with a thunderstorm and are usually weaker than the weakest tornado.Typically, the life cycle of a dust devil is a few minutes or less

Firewhirls are formed from the intense heat created by a major forest fire or volcanic eruption.  A tornado-like rotating column of smoke and/or fire occurs when the fire updraft concentrates some initial weak eddy in the wind. Winds associated with firewhirls have been estimated at over 100 mph. They are sometimes called fire tornadoes, fire devils, or even firenadoes.
How Do They Form?
There are a clear set of steps that lead to a tornado:

First, even before the thunderstorm (or supercell) develops, winds will change direction and increase in speed at high altitudes. This creates an invisible, horizontal spinning effect in the lower atmosphere.

Then, rising air inside the thunderstorm’s updraft tilts this newly spinning air from horizontal to vertical.

Next, A 2 to 6 mile wide rotation is contained inside the storm - this is where the most violent tornadoes form. After that, the cloud at the central base of the storm begins to take in cool, moist air from the downdraft which converges with the warm air in the updraft, causing a rotating wall cloud. This rapidly descending air is known as the rear flank downdraft (or RFD). This RFD also focuses the developing tornado's base, causing it to siphon air from a smaller and smaller area on the ground. The updraft intensifies and creates an area of low pressure at the surface which pulls the focused mesocyclone down, in the form of a visible funnel.

Finally, as the funnel descends, the RFD also reaches the ground, creating a gust front that can cause severe damage a good distance from the tornado. Usually, the funnel cloud begins causing damage on the ground within a few minutes of the RFD reaching the ground. At that point it is not a funnel cloud and is officially a tornado.
The Enhanced Fujita Scale
The Enhanced Fujita scale (EF scale) rates the strength of tornadoes in the United States and Canada based on the damage they cause. Introduced in 1971 by Tetsuya Theodore Fujita, it was adopted by the United States on February 1, 2007, followed by Canada on April 18, 2013. It is comprised of six categories from zero to five representing increasing degrees of damage. The scale remains a damage scale and is only a proxy for actual wind speeds.

Wed, 22 May 2013 05:12:13 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/10-things-to-know-about-tornadoes/analise.dubner
<![CDATA[The Best Supplies to Put in an Earthquake Survival Kit]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/supplies-to-put-in-an-earthquake-survival-kit/jeff419?source=rss
The best supplies to put in an earthquake survival kit are here in this list of emergency essentials for an earthquake. If you're living in an earthquake area, an earthquake survival kit is a must in case of natural disaster. There are many things we know about earthquakes which means there's no reason to be unprepared in case an earthquake hits your city.

If you don't know what to put in an earthquake emergency kit, this earthquake supply list is the place to look. All the earthquake survival supplies on this emergency preparedness list are ranked in order of importance by users who either have their own natural disaster survival kits or who have already started to prepare their own earthquake kits. Whether you think a good first-aid kit is the most important thing in an emergency or that the thing no emergency kit should be without is bottled water, this is the place for answers and opinions about how to make your own earthquake survival kit. It's the perfect companion to a disaster preparedness checklist.

What are the best supplies to put in an earthquake survival kit? What are the essential items to have in case of a natural disaster? What should go in an emergency earthquake kit? What are the necessary items for a natural disaster emergency kit? The items on this list- as ranked by other users- are meant to answer these and other questions you might have about natural disaster preparedness.

If you want to build a more comprehensive disaster kit for more than earthquake survival, know what you need to make a kit of supplies for disaster preparedness, and if mobile alertness is a concern, there's the list of best supplies for emergency car kits.

Stay prepared with more lists like which foods are best for survival in emergencies and the essentials for a car emergency. 

The Best Supplies to Put in an Earthquake Survival Kit,


First-Aid Kit


Non-Perishable Food

Pocket Knife



Bottled Water

Warm Clothes


Wed, 23 Jan 2013 07:22:38 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/supplies-to-put-in-an-earthquake-survival-kit/jeff419
<![CDATA[The Impossible Movie Quotes]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/the-impossible-movie-quotes/movie-and-tv-quotes?source=rss

"The Impossible" movie quotes take the tragic real-life story of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami in Thailand and makes it personal as viewers follow one family torn apart by the deadly natural disaster. The disaster drama film was based on a true story of survival and adapted into a screenplay written by Sergio G. Sánchez. J.A. Bayona directs the film which was given a December 21, 2012, release date in the United States.

In "The Impossible," parents Henry (Ewan McGregor) and Maria (Naomi Watts) take their three boys, Lucas, Thomas and Simon (Tom Holland, Samuel Joslin and Oaklee Pendergast, respectively) on a tropical vacation for the 2004 Christmas holiday. They enjoy each other's company, as well as the sights and surroundings at their beachfront resort in Thailand but then the unthinkable happens. On the morning of December 26, 2004, as the family is enjoying time at the pool, a 30-foot wall of water crashes over the land, wiping out everything and everyone in its path.

When the waters settle, Henry realizes that he has been split apart from his family. He finds sons Thomas and Simon but wife Maria and son Lucas are nowhere to be found. In another location, Maria and Lucas cling to a floating log together in the high waters, wondering where the rest of their family is and if they're alive. The film continues as the two sides try desperately to find each other in the chaotic environment that remains.

"The Impossible" is sure to spark emotions, especially with a release so close to the holidays. For something a bit less heavy, instead check out "Killing Them Softly," "Hitchcock," "Skyfall," "Lincoln," "Flight," "Playing for Keeps," "Silver Linings Playbook," "Anna Karenina," "This Must Be the Place," "Cloud Atlas," "Wreck-It Ralph," "Nobody Walks," "The Sessions," "Red Dawn," "Chasing Mavericks," "Rise of the Guardians," "Argo," and "Looper."
The Impossible Movie Quotes,

We Can Go Swimming?

Henry: "Boys, come and see this. Isn't it great?"
Simon: "Dad, can we swim in there?"
Henry: "Yeah, we can go swimming, yeah"

As the family arrives at their tropical resort, son Simon asks if they will be swimming. At that point none of them had any idea that very soon that beautiful resort would be washed away by a tragedy.
Go and Help People

Maria: "Lucas, go and help people. You're good at it."

While awaiting medical care, Maria urges son Lucas to leave her bedside and instead help others who need it. Help is exactly where Lucas shines.
Paper Lanterns

Everyone: "10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1"
Thomas: "Ours isn't going up!"
Henry: "It isn't? Ours is going up."
Thomas: "It's going a different way than all the others."
Henry: "See, it's catching up."

The family takes part in the ritual of launching paper lanterns into the sky. This ritual, performed in many Asian countries, including in Thailand where they are launched as a gesture to provide good luck.
We Have To Help That Boy

Maria: "Wait, did you hear that?"
Lucas: "Mom, there's nothing we can do."
Maria: "Wait"
Lucas: "We are almost there but we have to get to safety."
Maria: "No, we have to help that boy."
Lucas: "If a wave catches us down here, we will die! We have to climb that tree right now."
Maria: [Yells] "Where are you?"
Lucas: "Mom, look at you. We need help! We can't risk it mom. Come on."
Maria: "Listen, what if that boy was Simon or Thomas? What if they needed help? You'd want someone to help them, wouldn't you?"
Lucas: "Simon and Thomas are dead!"
Maria: "Even if it's the last thing we do…"

Despite being in their own danger, Maria pleads with Lucas to help a boy whose screams they can hear. Lucas resists, instead urging them to find their own safety first but Maria is strong in her instincts to help when possible.
I Knew I Wasn't On My Own

Thomas: "I'm scared"
Henry: "I know, I know. I'm scared too but do you know, the most scary bit for me?"
Thomas: "When the water hit?"
Henry: "No, after that, when I came up and I was all on my own. That was the scariest part. Then I saw the two of you, clinging to that tree, I didn't feel so scared anymore because I knew I wasn't on my own. What if mommy and Lucas are on their own right now? Hmm? Imagine how scared they'll be."
Thomas: "We'll look for them together."
Henry: "No"
Thomas: "You can't…"
Henry: "Thomas, no, you have to look after Simon and I'm gonna keep looking for them. Okay? Okay?"

Finding himself split from his wife and one son, Henry tries his best to settle his other son Thomas. While Thomas wants to go looking for the rest of their family, Henry reminds him the importance of staying with brother Simon instead.
Morten Benstrom

Lucas: "You're looking for your family."
Swedish Tourist: "Have you seen them? Actem, Morten, Joseph"
Lucas: "I'll try and help you. Oay?"
Swedish Tourist: "Okay"
Lucas: "Actem Benstrom, Joseph Benstrom, anyone? Morten Benstrom?"
Morten Benstrom: "Yeah?"
Lucas: "Morten Benstrom from Sweden?"
Morten Benstrom: "Yeah"
Lucas: "I know your dad."
Morten Benstrom: "Papa?"
Lucas: "Yeah, your papa, he's here. I'll bring him here, okay?"

As a child there's not much Lucas can do to help those who were affected by the tsunami but he can help family member find one another. That's exactly what he does when he helps one father find his missing son.
You Can't Leave It Like That

Henry: "Did you hear from anyone yet?"
Family Member: "No, Henry, you're the first to call. Is everybody all right?"
Henry: "Maria and Lucas are not here."
Family Member: "What do you, what do you mean they're not there?"
Henry: "The water came and swept everyone away, and I found, I found Thomas and Simon… and I don't know what to do. I don't know where to look. Lots of people need to use the phone okay? I'll call you later."
Tourist: "You can't leave it like that. Come on."
Henry: "It's me again. Look, I promise you that I won't stop looking until I find them, okay? I don't know what I'm going to do cause it's nighttime now but I'll look in all the hospitals and I look in all the shelters. I will find them I promise you that. I'll call you when I do."

When Henry is given a short time to use a cell phone and call home, he is at a loss for what to do and say next. A kind tourist gives Henry a second use of the phone to pledge to the family member that he will find the rest of his loved ones.
Get The Boys

Maria: "Hey, get the boys!"
Henry: "Lucas!"
Lucas: "Dad!"

In these split seconds, everything changes for the resort town and everyone there as a giant tsunami washes away everything on the shore. A scary and hectic situation for any involved is further complicated in that the family members are split apart in the aftermath.
I'm Scared

Lucas: "I'm always a brave kid, mom, but I'm scared."
Maria: "I'm scared too."

Moments after the tsunami washes away everything in its path, Maria and Lucas come together and cling to a log floating in the water. Lucas knows he's a brave kid but this has him scared, his mother too.

Tue, 11 Dec 2012 01:24:14 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/the-impossible-movie-quotes/movie-and-tv-quotes
<![CDATA[11 Amazing & Rare Natural Phenomena]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/10-amazing-and-rare-natural-phenomenons/analise.dubner?source=rss
This natural phenomena list chronicles some of the most stunning, and rare, occurrences in nature (with photos). The natural world is packed to the brim with amazing life forms and spectacular accomplishments, but there are some things that just stand out. Mostly because they are so rare and unusual.

What are some natural phenomenons that occur in nature? Some of the examples on this list have yet to be fully understood, and others have been well documented throughout history... but one thing is for certain, if you witness even one of these amazing and rare occurrences in your lifetime, consider yourself lucky.
11 Amazing & Rare Natural Phenomena,

Rogue Wave
Rogue waves (also known as freak waves, monster waves, killer waves, extreme waves, and abnormal waves) are large and dangerous surface waves that occur far out to sea. These are not tsunamis, but instead seem to form from a variety of possible causes.

There are three types of rogue waves, the "Wall of Water", the "Three Sisters" and single, giant storm waves that can collapse within moments of their formation. These waves seem to occur in deep water or where a number of physical factors converge and can cause a number of waves to join together.
Ice Circles
That ice circles and discs form is no mystery, but how they form is still a little up in the air. Ice circles are thin, circular slabs of ice that rotate slowly in the water. It is believed that they form in eddy currents, but some new theories involving rising methane have been brought forward in Russia.
Aurora Borealis

Superintendant Chalmers: Good Lord, what is happening in there?
principal Skinner: The Aurora Borealis?
Superintendant Chalmers: The Aurora Borealis? At this time of year? At this time of day? In this part of the country? Localized entirely within your kitchen?
principal Skinner: Yes.
Superintendant Chalmers: May I see it?
principal Skinner: No.

An aurora is a natural light display in the sky particularly in the Arctic and Antarctic regions, caused by the collision of energetic charged particles with atoms in the thermosphere. These charged particles come from the magnetosphere as well as solar winds and are directed by the Earth's magnetic field into the atmosphere.

The altitude and the density of the atmosphere determine the colors you see, when the energetic electrons are strong enough to split the air molecules into nitrogen and oxygen. Oxygen atoms tend to display in two typical colors: green and red. The red is a brownish red that is at the limit of what the human eye can see, and although the red auroral emission is often very bright, we can barely see it.

To see aurora you need clear and dark sky. During very large auroral events, the aurora may be seen throughout the US and Europe, but these events are rare. I saw the Aurora in the middle of Utah once... looked like the sky was on fire in the middle of the night.
Sailing Stones
The method by which these stones travel is still an unsolved mystery. At a place called The Racetrack Playa in Death Valley, there's a dry lake bed that is surprisingly flat, with only a 4cm height differential between the north and south ends. The high mountains surrounding the Racetrack are made mostly of dark dolomite and tower over the lake bed. When the heavy desert rains come, water pours down these mountains and onto the lake bed, forming a very shallow lake. Due to the hot temperatures of the region (because, you know, Death Valley), the water evaporates, leaving behind a layer of soft, very slick mud. There is a theory that high winds move the rocks at this time, the thin layer of mud acting as a lubricated surface. However, the fact that some stones move and others do not, or that some will simply change direction... makes the wind theory slightly suspect.

These rocks seem to only move every 2 or 3 years, and some tracks develop over 4 years. There have been research teams on the Playa since the 70s, but no one has yet to witness the stones actually moving.

Update: In 2014, a team of scientists and engineers were finally able to capture on video how it happens
Fire Rainbow
Also called a circumhorizontal arc, a fire rainbow is an optical phenomenon formed by ice crystals in high altitude cirrus clouds. If you are very lucky and live at the right latititude, you might see one, possibly two in your entire lifetime. Cirrus clouds are those spread-out, wispy looking clouds that you see way up past the regular, fluffy ones. They are so wispy because there is very little moisture in the air at that altitude.

Despite the fact that cirrus clouds are common, fire rainbows are not. This is for the same reason that you only see a regular rainbow under certain circumstances. The light from the sun has to hit these particular ice crystals at exactly the right angle or the light will not separate (refract) into its colorful components - at least 58 degrees above the horizon. Because of the absolutely specific height of the sun you will not see a fire rainbow south or north of 55 degrees.
Raining Animals

Raining animals is a rare meteorological phenomenon in which animals fall from the sky. There are a few theories about how this happens, one suggests that strong winds traveling over water sometimes pick up creatures such as fish or frogs, and carry them for up to several miles. However, while people have witnessed the animals actually falling, this initial stage of where and how the animals get grabbed up in the first place has never been witnessed or scientifically tested.

In some reported cases, the animals fall to the ground intact and alive, and in some they are found frozen or shredded.
Water Spout
A water spout is technically a non-supercell tornado over water... and while it's usually weaker than its land-brother the tornado, stronger ones are possible.

Usually found in the tropics, they've been known to form over lakes as well. There are generally three types: non-tornadic, tornadic and snowspout. The first, non-tornadic (or fair weather waterspouts) are the most common and tend to live only about 20 minutes. A tornadic spout is much stronger, and basically an actual tornado over water. These, like tornados, are connected with severe thunderstorms. Finally, the snowspout (also known as a snow devil) is the rarest of the three types. Only six known pictures exist (four from Ontario, CA), and they require extremely cold temps over a body of warm water with a difference of a specific 34 degrees to form at all.
Ball Lightning

Ball lightning is an unexplained atmospheric electrical phenomenon that refers to a luminous, usually spherical object (and it's not a piece o' the car) which can vary from pea-sized to several meters in diameter. It is usually associated with thunderstorms, but lasts considerably longer than the split-second flash of a lightning bolt.

Laboratory experiments have produced effects that are visually similar to reports of ball lightning, but it is presently unknown whether these are actually related to any naturally occurring phenomenon. Scientific data on natural ball lightning are scarce owing to its infrequency and unpredictability. The presumption of its existence is based on reported public sightings, and has therefore produced somewhat inconsistent findings. Because there is a real lack of data on the phenomenon, the true nature of ball lightning is still unknown.
Penitentes are a snow formation found only at high altitudes. They take the form of tall thin blades of hardened snow or ice closely spaced and pointing in the general direction of the sun. Penitentes can be as tall as a person.

The key climatic condition that leads to the formation of penitentes is that dew point is always below freezing. Thus, snow will sublimate, because sublimation requires a higher energy input than melting. The surface geometry of the growing penitente produces a positive feedback mechanism, and radiation is trapped by multiple reflections between the walls of the points. The hollows become almost a black body for radiation, while decreased wind leads to air saturation, increasing dew point temperature and the onset of melting. In this way peaks and walls remain, which intercept only a minimum of solar radiation and in the spaces between, ablation is enhanced, leading to a downward growth of penitentes. A mathematical model of the process has been developed, but the initial stage of penitente growth, from granular snow to the birth of a new penitente, still remains unclear.
Algal Bloom
Algal blooms are a natural phenomenon, the occurrence of which may be increased by nutrient pollution. Algae can multiply quickly in waterways with an overabundance of nitrogen and phosphorus, particularly when the water is warm and the weather is calm. This proliferation causes "blooms" of algae that turn the water green, orange or red. 

 The ones that most folks take note of, of course, are the ones that turn the ocean to blood. Or, you know, "red tide", even though it has nothing to do with the tide. This is known as one of the 'harmful blooms', although not only the red and brown algea are harmful. These HABs can produce neurotoxins (which affect the nervous system) and hepatotoxins (which affect the liver). These toxins can potentially impact the health of people who come into contact with water where HABs are present in high numbers.Even though these blooms have been around since before biblical times, there has been increased public awareness of the negative impacts of these blooms to marine resources -- such as strandings and deaths of marine mammals, birds, and sea turtles. In addition, scientists have determined that there are more toxic algal species, algal toxins, affected fisheries resources, food-web disruption, and economic losses from harmful algal blooms than ever before.

Sun, 06 Nov 2011 01:41:14 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/10-amazing-and-rare-natural-phenomenons/analise.dubner
<![CDATA[The Worst Wildfires in US History]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/the-worst-wildfires-in-us-history/drake-bird?source=rss
Wiping out millions of acres of land and killing hundreds, the worst wildfires in US history are some of the worst natural disasters to ever hit the country. Though not all were caused by natural means, with some set by arsonists or created by abandoned campfires, each devastated large areas of land, wiped out buildings, and caused fatalities. What are the most major wildfires and major forest fires in the history of America? Read on to find out more!

Though modern times have seen large fires, especially in California and Texas in the past few years, the worst fires ever seen in the United States took place over 100 years ago. The deadliest, the 1871 Peshtigo Fire, claimed 2,500 lives while the largest was the Great Fire of 1910, burning three million acres of land.

As shown in these famous wildfires, many if not all incidents of tragedy, wildfires are very dangerous and can claim lives just like the worst tornadoes ever. Fortunately, as the old slogan states, forest fires can be prevented. What are the worst wildfires in history? Take a look at this list of wildfires and you'll find out for yourself.

If you're curious about things like the biggest fire in history and other kinds of natural disasters, check out more lists like Worst Earthquakes of All TimeMost Devastating Global Famines and Droughts, Most Shocking Tornadoes.

The Worst Wildfires in US History,

2016 Gatlinburg Firestorm

Mountain resort city Gatlinburg, TN was consumed by a firestorm in late November and early December 2016. Fourteen people died from the blaze, including a mother and her two young daughters and Dr. Ed Taylor, a local minister who officiated more than 85,000 weddings. 

The fire became exceedingly dangerous when strong winds spread a small patch of flames across a large swath of Great Smoky Mountain National Park. By the time the it died down, 17,000 acres were scorched and 170 structures destroyed. About 14,000 people were evacuated, 130 injured, and 2,500 left without power. Before and after pictures show the extent of the devastation. 

Dolly Parton, whose theme park, Dollywood, abuts Gatlinburg, organized a telethon to benefit victims of the fire, to take place on December 13, 2016. As of December 5, Parton had raised $1m for fire victims through other efforts.  

Summer 2008 California Wildfires
Burning land in Northern and Central California, the Summer 2008 California Wildfires included over 2,780 individual fires that occurred between May 22 and August 29, 2008. Killing 23 people and destroying over 1.15 million acres of land, the fires were believed to be caused by a combination of lightning and heat.
Great Fire of 1910
Believed to be the largest fire in U.S. history, the Great Fire of 1910 burned over two days from August 21 and August 21, 1910, in the states of Washington, Idaho and Montana. An estimated three million acres of land were burned by the blaze and 87 people were killed.
2004 Taylor Complex Fire
The Taylor Complex Fire was part of a record-breaking 2004 fire season in Alaska that burned a combined 6.6 million acres. This fire accounted for 1.3 million acres alone, making it the single largest wildfire in the United States during the period of 1997 to 2007.
1871 Peshtigo Fire
Killing as many of 2,500 people, the 1871 Peshtigo Fire is believed to be the deadliest fire in United States history. The fire took place on October 8, 1871, in Peshtigo, Wisconsin, burning 1.2 million acres of land.
Murphy Complex Fire
Spreading through the states of Idaho and Nevada, the Murphy Complex Fire burned an estimated 653,000 acres of land in 2007. The same area was subject to another fire, which spread into Mexico, in June 2011.
Yellowstone Fires of 1988
Caused from a number of smaller fires that burned out of control, the Yellowstone Fires of 1988 shut down the national part completely for several months and destroyed 793,880 acres or roughly 36% of the park. Over 9,000 firefighters attempted to control the blaze but the effort was a losing one with the fire allowed to burn out. It eventually was ended by a snowstorm that hit the area.
The Great Michigan Fire
Also called the Thumb Fire, The Great Michigan Fire was actually a series of fires in the state that claimed an estimated 200 lives in 1871. The fires started on October 8, 1871, the same time as the Great Chicago Fire and the Peshtigo Fire, and went on to wipe out one million acres of land.
Wallow Fire
Burning from May 29, 2011, to July 8, 2011, the Walloe Fire was named after the Bear Wallow Wilderness, where the blaze in Arizona and New Mexico started. Over 538,000 acres of land, 72 buildings and 16 people perished as a result of the fire, which was believed to have been started by an abandoned campfire.
1865 Silverton Fire
Wiping out roughly one million acres of timber, the 1865 Silverton Fire was the worst to hit the state of Oregon. Few details of the incident are known, including the exact dates and number of fatalities.

Wed, 07 Sep 2011 03:37:41 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/the-worst-wildfires-in-us-history/drake-bird
<![CDATA[13 Helpful Hurricane Preparedness Tips]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/13-helpful-hurricane-preparedness-tips/mary-sterling?source=rss

If you're in an area that may be impacted by a hurricane, listen up: There are things you can do now to prepare. Most of the hurricane preparedness tips on this list can be done well in advance of an approaching storm. Don't wait. Do these things now, and if you do wind up taking a hit from mother nature, you'll be grateful you took action beforehand.

With Hurricane Irene making a bee line for the Atlantic Coast, millions of people could be impacted. If the storm moves up the coast to New England, millions more may find themselves unprepared for the wrath. While you can't do much about the storm itself, you can take steps now to keep yourself and your family protected.

Hurricanes pose several threats: high winds can cause devastating damage, but heavy rains and storm surges can be equally as destructive. Widespread power outages are quite common in the wake of a hurricane, so you'll need to prepare for this. In addition, if you are asked to evacuate, you'll want to have everything ready - so you can leave at a moment's notice.
13 Helpful Hurricane Preparedness Tips,

Have a Flashlight and Batteries on Hand

Most of us do have at least one or two flashlights lying around the house. Time to dig through the kitchen drawers now. Make sure you have a working flashlight, in the event you lose power. Also, please check to make SURE you have extra batteries. Stock up!

Another tip: Candles are always a good idea. Have an ample supply. Also, make sure you have lighters and matches on hand. And please, don't leave candles burning unattended. Just keep them lit in the areas where you and your family are - not in additional, unoccupied rooms.
Make a Go Bag

What the heck is a "go bag," you ask? A "go bag," or a "grab and go bag" is basically a kit that you can put together well in advance of any storm, especially a hurricane. You'll need it if you are asked to evacuate an area in the path of a potentially dangerous storm. Your go bag should have some essential items, including:

Plenty of water (approximately one gallon for each person in your household, per day, for at least 3 days)

Non-perishable food (canned goods and a can opener, crackers, bread, chips, fruit - anything that won't spoil)

Medication (be sure to refill any prescription medications you need before the storm hits, and include any over-the-counter meds you take regularly, along with a first aid kit, if possible)

Important documents and cash in small bags. You know that lock box you keep in the office closet? The one with insurance papers, mortgage papers, etc.? Get it out and have it ready to take with you if you need to evacuate.

An emergency radio, with extra batteries

A cell phone with a charger

Plastic baggies: You should put your important documents and cash, along with your phones, in plastic bags to protect them in case they get wet

Moist towelettes: If you don't have running water handy, these little towelettes can be heavenly, allowing you to clean up after munching out on your canned goods and/or freshening up if you can't take a shower.

**Another tip: Gather some blankets and pillows if you're heading for a shelter.
Grab Some Extra Cash
If a hurricane does impact your area, ATM machines may go down (they need power, like everything else). Even if your local grocery store is open immediately after the storm, they may not be able to accept debit and/or credit cards - just cash. Go ahead and visit the bank or the ATM now and withdraw some cash. No need to flip out and withdraw your savings, but have enough on hand (small bills are great) to make purchases.
Make a Family Emergency Plan

Every family should have some sort of emergency plan in place, be it for storms or any other disaster. If things get rough and a hurricane slams into your area, you may not be able to get good cell phone service. Make sure everyone in your household knows where to meet, if the worst happens. Designate an emergency contact person (preferably someone who lives out-of-town) and make sure everyone knows that person's number.

Make sure everyone in the family knows how to text message. If phone systems get overwhelmed (and they definitely do in the wake of any disaster), texting may be the only means of communicating with others.
Respect the Cone
Those familiar with hurricane watching know what "the cone" is, but for those who don't: It's the projected areas that NOAA forecasters think will be impacted in some way by a hurricane. Sometimes the cone is off a bit - these storms can change course rather quickly, and it's difficult to predict an exact hurricane path days in advance. Nevertheless, if you live in an area included in the cone, OR near one, respect it. Know that things can change, but be smart enough to take precautions ahead of time.
If Asked to Evacuate, GO
If your state and/or local government officials ask you to voluntarily evacuate your area ahead of a storm, strongly consider doing it. Grab your "go bag" and go. If you are in a mandatory evacuation zone, you must leave. You may think it would be cool to "ride out" a hurricane by sheltering in place, but believe me, about an hour into the storm's onslaught, you'll regret your decision to stay. Just get to a safe place, hunker down, and ride the storm out in safety.
Charge Your Cell Phones

If you lose power, you won't be able to charge your cell phone when the juice runs out. Be sure that all portable devices, especially cell phones, are fully charged well ahead of the storm. FEMA also recommends that people try to limit cell phone use in storm-ravaged areas - at least initially - so your cell phone/smart phone can be extremely important, allowing you to text and use social media to communicate with others.

**Another tip: If you live in a particularly storm-prone area, consider investing in a portable cell phone charger for your car.
Get Fuel: Gas and Propane

Yes, gas up the vehicles. Don't freak out and hoard (meaning don't bring 18 gas cans and fill them all up), but make sure that the vehicles you have are fully fueled up. Prolonged power outages can cause big problems at the pump and temporary gas shortages do happen.

If you've got a gas grill, grab a tank or two of extra propane. If the power goes out, you'll be able to cook (and use up the stuff in the freezer that may go bad quickly).
Keep a Portable Radio Around
Most of us are wired in to the Internet and 24-hour television channels to get information, but remember: If the power goes out, these things go bye-bye. Remember portable radios? No? Well, they're handy-dandy devices that let you listen to...the radio. Local radio. Meaning, they're a way to keep in touch with the outside world if Mother Nature decides to put the whammy on your town. Keep a portable radio around and, as with all "old school" devices, be sure you have enough batteries on hand to keep it going!
Have a Weather Radio
Those who live in storm-prone areas likely already have weather radios - but if you don't, get one. These devices are truly life-savers. You'll be able to keep track of all updated weather information in your specific area. Don't plan on relying on the TV - if you lose power, you'll be stuck in the dark, literally and figuratively.

Thu, 25 Aug 2011 05:39:35 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/13-helpful-hurricane-preparedness-tips/mary-sterling
<![CDATA[The Funniest Internet Reactions to the East Coast Earthquake]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/the-funniest-internet-reactions-to-the-east-coast-earthquake/robert-wabash?source=rss
On August 23, 2011, the East Coast felt a 5.9 earthquake. It's being said that it was felt from Virginia to Toronto. The East Coast isn't used to this. The West Coast usually sleeps through earthquakes of this size. Hence, the internet erupted with jokes making fun of the East for making such a big deal about the quake. So, from Twitter reactions, to Reddit comics, to viral images, here are the funniest internet reactions to the East Coast's earthquake on August 23, 2011.
The Funniest Internet Reactions to the East Coast Earthquake,

Osama bin Laden's Tweet

Keeping It Simple with the Fat Jokes

via @MikeRhoads
Wikipedia Proves How Reputable It Is

Rob Delaney Cleans Up

This .Gif
This .Gif. This is the .Gif: http://i.imgur.com/yK3Pg.gif
NYC Earthquake Relief

Earthquakes in NY in Real Life

The Best Hipster Brooklyn Tweet

Patton Oswalt's Tweets

First Pictures of the DC Earthquake's Destruction

Tue, 23 Aug 2011 04:49:50 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/the-funniest-internet-reactions-to-the-east-coast-earthquake/robert-wabash
<![CDATA[The Worst Earthquakes of the Century]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/the-worst-earthquakes-of-the-century/drake-bird?source=rss
As some of the most horrible natural disasters on record, the worst earthquakes of the century claimed thousands of lives and caused billions of dollars in damages. The massive earthquakes seen in the 21st century are among the worst in history, with many sadly claiming hundreds of thousands of lives at a time from the initial quake and resulting tsunamis, which also ranked among the worst earthquakes ever.

While death tolls are often disputed, the 2004 Indian Ocean Earthquake and the 2010 Haiti Earthquake are the worst two earthquakes of the 21st century, with each taking over 200,000 lives, leaving millions injured or homeless, and causing hundreds of billions of dollars in damage.

Sadly, earthquakes, like other natural disasters such as tornadoes and famines, are natural, often occur without warning, and leave no apologies. Many times caused by tectonic plate movement, earthquakes cannot be prevented and are too often deadly for those affected.

What are the worst earthquakes of the 21st century? Sadly, this list will give you that answer... for now.
The Worst Earthquakes of the Century,

2014 Chile Earthquake - 8.2
A magnitude-8.2 temblor earthquake struck off the coast of Chile late Tuesday, April 1, 2014 killing at least six people, triggering a six-foot tsunami and sending 900,000 people fleeing to "safe zones." The next day, on April 2, a 7.6 magnitude aftershock hit the same region.
The quake struck roughly 62 miles northwest of the port city of Iquique and was 12.5 miles below the seabed, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. A tsunami advisory was issued for Hawaii, but no destructive tsunami ever materialized. Chileans were affected by landslides that blocked roads, knocked out power for thousands, damaged an airport, and caused fires that destroyed several businesses. Most of the victims were killed by falling debris or heart attacks, and Chilean President Michelle Bachelet declared a state of emergency in the region.

2016 New Zealand Earthquake - 7.8

A devastating earthquake rocked New Zealand's South Island on November 13, 2016. The quake was centered 91 km, or about 57 miles, north of Christchurch, south of the coastal city of Kaikoura, which attracts more than 100,000 tourists per year. 

Initially measure as a magnitude 7.5 quake in New Zealand, the event was upgraded to a 7.8 by the US Geological Survey. The quake destroyed property throughout New Zealand, and put the country on a tsunami watch, which was downgraded after large waves hit the country's coast after the event. Land slides and shifts throughout the country have left many areas cut off, including the Kaikoura. 

Amidst aftershocks, helicopters flew into Kaikoura to evacuate all those who wanted to leave, as the main roads into the city are all blocked, and may remain so for some time. About 1,200 tourists were in the area when the earthquake hit. The helicopters used rugby grounds as a makeshift airport. 

Though only two people are reported to have died during the quake, it caused massive damage throughout the country. New Zealand Prime Minster John Key said, "It's just utter devastation, I just don't know... that's months of work... You’ve got to believe it’s in the billions of dollars to resolve."

Also three cows were stranded

2011 Tohoku Earthquake - 9.0
The 2011 Tohoku Earthquake, also called the Great East Japan Earthquake, is one of the most recent on the list of the worst earthquakes of the century, occurring on Friday, March 11, 2011, at 2:46 p.m. local time. The massive 9.0-magnitude tremor, which had a depth of 32 kilometers, was one of the top five earthquakes in terms of magnitude.

This earthquake not only caused a powerful tsunami with waves up to 133 feet tall, but also moved the island of Honshu a reported eight feet east. As a result of both, over 15,700 people were killed, another 5,700 inured, and over 4,600 went missing. Property damage, which also threatened the Fukushima I and II Nuclear Power Plants, was estimated around $180 billion.
2005 Sumatra Earthquake - 8.7
Hitting Indonesia with yet another deadly quake, the 2005 Sumatra Earthquake shook the area on March 28, 2005. The 8.7-magnitude shake had a depth of 30 kilometers and was centered near off the northern coast of Sumatra. Similar to the 2004 tragedy, though much smaller, a tsunami followed the earthquake and brought the island nation waves close to 10 feet tall.

The area affected by the earthquake was still very much in the process of rebuilding from the massive 2004 earthquake and saw additional damage from this tremor. Another 1,300 people, many from the island of Nias, were killed and millions of dollars in additional property damage occurred.
2008 Sichuan Earthquake - 8.0
Centered in the Sichuan province of China, an 8.0-magnitude earthquake shook the area for more than two minutes on May 12, 2008. The Great Sichuan Earthquake as it's been called, was one of the deadliest in China and one of the worst of the century, killing over 69,000. As if the first quake was not horrific enough, strong aftershocks, including a total of over 42,700 and as strong as a 6.0-magnitude, haunted the area in the time following.

Using roughly one trillion yuan, or $146.5 billion, China spent more than three years rebuilding the area. In all, as many as 11 million were left homeless from the massive destruction, which also left over 18,000 missing and roughly 374,000 injured. In proportion, roughly 15 million live in the affected area.
2001 Gujarat Earthquake - 7.7
Striking the country on their national holiday of Republic Day, the 2001 Gujarat Earthquake hit the Kutch District of Gujarat, India, on the morning of January 26, 2001. The intraplate earthquake was centered at a depth of 16 kilometers and reached a magnitude of 7.7. The shake was felt for as far around as 700 kilometers and is believed to have killed nearly 20,000 and injured another 166,000.

While the city of Kutch saw the most fatalities, at 12,290, Bhuj saw the most destruction. Around 40% of homes, numerous schools, hospitals and roads were destroyed in Bhuj, all contributing to the estimated $5.5 billion in property damages from the tremor.
2016 Ecuador Earthquake - 7.8
Coastal areas of Ecuador were hit by a magnitude-7.8 earthquake on April 16, 2016. As of April 19, the death toll was marked at over 400 people, with more than 2,500 injured. Hardest hit was Manabi Province, though damage was spread throughout the country.
2004 Indian Ocean Earthquake - 9.1-9.3
Causing massive destruction in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand, the Maldives, and the Eastern coast of Africa, the 2004 Indian Ocean Earthquake is the deadliest earthquake of the 21st century. The quake itself, an estimated 9.1-9.3 magnitude, struck on Sunday, December 26, 2004, off the coast of Sumatra, Indonesia, but it was the resulting tsunami that proved to be the deadliest.

Combining the figures from the Sumatra-Andaman earthquake and the Indonesian Tsunami, which had waves of nearly 100 feet high, over 230,000 lives were lost. Numerous others were injured and billions of dollars in damages were reported. The 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami is the deadliest tsunami in history.

In addition to being the worst earthquake of the century, the 2004 Indian Ocean Earthquake also ranks as the fifth deadliest earthquake among the worst earthquakes in history and the third strongest earthquake ever in terms of magnitude.
2015 Nepal Earthquake - 7.8
A 7.8-magnitude quake hit South Asia on Saturday, April 25, 2015. More than 4,000 people died and over 7,000 sustained injuries. The earthquake resulted in an avalanche at Mount Everest's base camp, killing 18 people. Further deaths were counted in Indian and Tibet. 

Long term costs of reconstruction could amount to more than $5 billion (with a B), which accounts for 20% of Nepal's GDP. Doctors Without Borders sent in eight teams following the earthquake and foreign governments have sent aid as well. All mountaineering on the Chinese side of Mount Everest was cancelled following the quake.

Click here for further updates.
2015 Chile Earthquake - 8.3
On September 16, 2015, Chile was struck by a magnitude 8.3 earthquake. At least five people were killed and one million were evacuated from affected areas. The quake triggered tsunami alerts and coastal evacuations, reaching as far north as areas of California, and resulted in mass flooding in Concon, Chile and other areas.

The epicenter was reported to have been approximately 34 miles west of Illapel, at a depth of 20.5 miles.

Sources: CNN, Telegraph

Wed, 17 Aug 2011 08:17:21 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/the-worst-earthquakes-of-the-century/drake-bird
<![CDATA[The World's 6 Known Supervolcanoes]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/the-world_s-6-known-supervolcanoes/analise.dubner?source=rss

Here is the list of all supervolcano locations in the world. Supervolcano is a word that sounds pretty silly. It's not just a regular volcano, it's SUPER. Just SUPER! Mega? Sure, we can call them mega volcanoes, too. Either way, these calderas live up to the hype.

A supervolcano can rain superheated rocks and debris down over great distances. An eruption of that magnitude would fill the atmosphere with ash, sulfuric acid, and sulfur dioxide, and could potentially cause (and actually has, in the ancient past) a new Ice Age. Volcanic eruptions are categorized by the VEI (Volcanic Explosivity Index) on a scale that goes from 0-8, with 0 being non-explosive and 8 being a supervolcanic eruption. In other words, as life-eliminating as you can get. You might think of these kinds of super volcanoes as existing only in prehistoric times, but you would be wrong.

On January 2017, scientists reported that Italy's Campi Flegri, a volcano in the metropolitan area of Naples, showed signs of waking up and approaching critical pressure. Also known as the Phlegraean Fields, the supervolcano region consists of 24 craters. The most recent eruption dates back to 1538, but hundreds of thousands of years ago, Campi Flegrei had a series of massive volcanic eruptions. Although many scientists and researchers doubt an eruption in our lifetimes, it's impossible to say for certain. 

If you've ever asked yourself, "Are there any supervolcanoes that threaten life in modern times?" the answer would be six. There are SIX known, active super volcanoes in the world today. Six. And if you want more volcano lists check out the worst & largest volcanic eruptions on earth and death by volcano lists.

The World's 6 Known Supervolcanoes,

Aira Caldera
One of the most recently troubling calderas in the world is the 150-square-mile Aira caldera in southern Japan, on the edge of which sits the city of Kagoshima. 22,000 years ago 14 cubic miles of material burped out of the ground and formed the Aira caldera, which is now largely Kagoshima Bay. That is equal to about 50 Mount St. Helens eruptions. The Sakura-jima volcano, which forms part of the Aira caldera, has been active on and off for the past century and still causes earthquakes today, indicating that the caldera itself is far from sleeping.
Lake Toba
The 1,080-square-mile Toba caldera in North Sumatra, Indonesia is the only supervolcano in existence that can be described as Yellowstone's "big" sister. About 74,000 years ago, Toba erupted and ejected several thousand times more material than erupted from Mount St. Helens in 1980. Some researchers think that Toba's ancient super eruption and the global cold spell it triggered might explain a mystery in the human genome. Our genes suggest we all come from a few thousand people just tens of thousands of years ago, instead of from a much older, bigger lineage — as the fossil evidence testifies. Both could be true if only a few small groups of humans survived the cold years following the Toba eruption.
Taupo Caldera
New Zealand's Taupo caldera has been filled by water, creating what many describe as one of the world's most beautiful landscapes, but the lake itself was created by a massive eruption 26,500 years ago. The caldera — the collapsed and subsided basin left after the huge eruption — became today's lake. But Taupo is not dead. The 485-square-mile caldera let loose again in the year A.D. 181, with estimates of ash and magma reaching as high as 22 cubic miles. Today, there are plenty of signs of current volcanic activity in the form of hot springs and venting.
The Yellowstone Caldera
Unbeknownst to most, Yellowstone National Park sits on a subterranean chamber of molten rock and gasses so vast that it is arguably one of the largest active volcanoes in the world. A magma chamber not far below the surface fuels all the volcanic attractions that Yellowstone is famous for. The last major eruption at Yellowstone, some 640,000 years ago, ejected 8,000 times the ash and lava of Mount St. Helens. It is alive and well today, and is the scientific basis for the hilarious volcanic explosion seen in the movie 2012 that blew up Woody Harrelson and, somehow, NOT John Cusack.
The Long Valley Caldera
Second only to Yellowstone in North America is the Long Valley caldera, in east-central California. The 200-square-mile caldera is just south of Mono Lake, near the Nevada state line. The biggest eruption from Long Valley was 760,000 years ago, which unleashed 2,000 to 3,000 times as much lava and ash as Mount St. Helens, after which the caldera floor dropped about a MILE, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. Some of the ash reached as far east as Nebraska. What worries geologists today was a swarm of strong earthquakes in 1980 and the 10-inch rise of about 100 square miles of caldera floor. Then, in the early 1990s, large amounts of carbon dioxide gas from magma below began seeping up through the ground and killing trees in the Mammoth Mountain part of the caldera. When these sorts of signs are present, it could mean trouble is centuries, decades, or even YEARS away, say volcanologists.
Valles Caldera
The 175-square-mile Valles caldera forms a large pock in the middle of northern New Mexico, west of Santa Fe. It last exploded 1.2 million and 1.6 million years ago, piling up 150 cubic miles of rock and blasting ash as far away as Iowa. As with other calderas, there are still signs of heat below: hot springs are still active around Valles. Geologists suspect the cause of Valles caldera has something to do with how the western United States' portion of the North American tectonic plate is being pulled apart.

Thu, 09 Jun 2011 10:49:26 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/the-world_s-6-known-supervolcanoes/analise.dubner
<![CDATA[The Worst Tornadoes in History]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/the-worst-tornadoes-in-history/drake-bird?source=rss
It's always tragic to lose lives from natural disasters like tornadoes, but these are particularly bad - they are the worst tornadoes in history, each claiming hundreds of lives in a matter of minutes. From the most recent, current cyclones to those of the past, sadly, this list names them all. With death tolls reaching tragic proportions, these are not only the worst cyclones environmentally, they're also the deadliest.

Though tornadoes and other natural disasters do not discriminate, the deadliest tornadoes have struck the most in the Asian country of Bangladesh. Each year, the country of around 120 million people generally sees strong, violent and often deadly tornadoes split between two seasons. The regional topography makes this area a hotbed for twisters and unfortunately makes the country a target for some of the deadliest tornadoes in world history. 

In fact the two deadliest tornadoes on record, which killed over 2,000 people in total, occurred in Bangladesh. The worst tornado ever, which hit Daultipur and Salturia, occurred in 1989 and claimed the lives of around 1,300 while the second deadliest was only as far back as in 1996, taking the lives of around 700 when it traveled from Madarganj to Mrizapur.

In addition to being the biggest tornados ever, these twisters caused millions of dollars in damages and injured thousands of others. Sadly, this is common among natural disasters. The same can be said for other disasters such as the worst volcanic eruptions in history and the worst tsunamis in history, among others.

What are the worst tornadoes in history? Take a look here and you'll see.
The Worst Tornadoes in History,

The Comoro Tornado

As the deadliest tornado to hit the continent of Africa, the Comoro Tornado killed and estimated 500 people when it struck in 1951. Similar to the Sicily Tornado that same year, the Comoro Tornado started out as a waterspout, then struck land and continued to intensify on a deadly path.

Few details of the tragedy are known other than the year, approximate number of deaths and location. The Comoros, archipelago island nation in the Indian Ocean on the eastern coast of Africa, were under French rule at the time, but later gained independence in 1975.
The Manikganj, Singair and Nawabganj Tornado
Named after the three main areas that were destroyed in its path, the Manikganj, Singair and Nawabganj Tornado took the likes of 681 people on April 17, 1973. Overall, the wide tornado destroyed the greater part of nine towns, including wiping out the entire large village of Balurchar.

The 681 fatalities rose as much as oer 1,000 in some unofficial death tolls and was likely the result of the massive size of the twister. According to reports, two tornadoes combined to form one massive tornado, which then went on a path of destruction throughout Bangladesh.

Overall, the Manikganj, Singair and Nawabganj Tornado, using the confirmed death toll of 681, ranks as the fourth deadliest in world history.
The Valetta, Malta, Tornado
Easily the oldest tornado to cause massive damage and claim a high number of lives, the Valetta, Malta, Tornado killed over 600 when it struck the Grand Harbour of Malta. As the tornado took place so long ago, sources are conflicting regarding when the tornado actually hit with September 23, 1951, and 1956 both being reported.

One thing is clear, the tornado began as a waterspout, a vortex very similar to a tornado that starts over water, then moved to land where it killed hundreds. The waterspout made an unfortunate landing right on the Grand Harbour of Malta, completely destroying a shipping armada in the bay.
The Sicily Tornado

Similar to the Valetta, Malta, Tornado, the 1851 Sicily Tornado started as a waterspout before moving onshore. Also similar, the age of the incident, which took place in December 1851, leaves few details of what actually happened, though an estimated 500 people perished that day.

According to reports, two waterspouts combined as they reached the shore of Sicily, Italy, and morphed into two large and violent tornadoes. Another theory of the incident denied the presence of two tornadoes but rather reported the destruction from a multiple-vortex tornado. A multiple-vortex tornado, different from a family of tornadoes, includes several areas of rotation inside of a single tornado.

Regardless if this incident featured one tornado or two, it was at the time one of the deadliest and most destructive natural disasters in history. The estimated 500 deaths put the incident seventh among all tornadoes in world history and the deadliest tornado ever to hit Italy.
The Narail-Magura Tornado

Despite occurring only back on April 11, 1964, the Narail-Magura Tornado, share characteristics with ancient tornadoes in that the details of the natural disaster are quite unclear. What is known is that the twister killed an estimated 500 people, though the total death toll could be much more.

The Narail-Magura Tornado hit the cities in Bangladesh, destroying a total of seven villages. One village, Bhabanipur, was home to 400 citizens, all of which were either confirmed dead or never seen or heard from again after the disaster. Overall, as many as 1,400 were either killed or went missing from the incident.
The Daulatpur-Salturia Tornado

Killing an estimated 1,300 people in a matter of minutes, the Daulatpur-Salturia tornado is believed to be the deadliest tornado on record. The twister hit the Manikganj District, Bangladesh, on April 26, 1989, at around 6:00 p.m. local time.

Prior to the tornado, a drought had been in effect for around six months, one factor that is believed to intensify tornadic conditions. Unsurprisingly, the tornado completely leveled the already barren land, uprooting trees and leveling an area spanning one mile wide, the estimated size of the tornado.

Overall, around 12,000 people were injured by the tornado and a total of 80,000, mostly in the towns of Saturia and Manikganj, which were completely destroyed, were left homeless.
Madarganj to Mrizapur Tornado

As one of the most recent of the deadliest tornadoes in history, an estimated 700 people perished after a huge tornado touched down from Madarganj to Mrizapur in Bangladesh on May 13, 1996. While the number of injuries were not known, the 700 deaths from the single twister make this the second single deadliest tornado on record.

As the tornado traveled south from Madarganj to Mirzapur in Bangladesh, a distance of over 100 kilometers, it also destroyed an estimated 30,000 homes. Among others, it took out several districts including Madarganj, Gopalpur, Kallhati, Basail, Shakipur and Mrizapur in Jamalpur and Tangail.
1969 East Pakistan Tornado

Taking place when the city of Dacca was part of East Pakistan (now Bangladesh), the 1969 East Pakistan tornado hit the highly populated area on April 14. That tornado, which struck in the northeastern suburbs of the town, killed an estimated 660 people and injured a total of 4,000.

As horrible as that tragedy was, it was only one of two deadly tornadoes to hit Bangladesh on April 14, 1969. A second twister touched down in the Homna Upazila, part of the Comilla District in Chittagong, Bangladesh, that same day.

The tornadoes were part of the same storm system, but separate from one another. Overall, once the estimated 223 deaths from the Homna Upazila tornado were added into the 660 from the Dacca twister, the total of 883 deaths makes this day the second deadliest of all days in history for tornado-related deaths.
The Tri-State Tornado

Coming in as the third deadliest tornado ever and the deadliest tornado to hit the United States, the Tri-State Tornado is one for the record books. More than doubling the number of deaths from the previous record, set in 1840 when the Great Natchez Tornado killed 317, the Tri-State Tornado claimed 695 lives on Wednesday, March 18, 1925.

Hitting the highest rating on the Fujita scale, an F5, the Tri-State Tornado lasted 3.5 hours and spawned eight additional tornadoes which brought the number of fatalities from the storm near 750.

While the name suggests the Tri-State Tornado hit three United States, it actually reached as many as seven once the other smaller tornadoes were factored in. The main twister, which caused the most deaths, started in Missouri, moved through Illinois and ended its run in Indiana. The other smaller tornadoes touched down in Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky and Kansas.
Oklahoma Tornado of 2013
Downed power lines, hissing gas pipes and immense devastation stood in the way of rescuers searching systematically for survivors and victims of a massive tornado that pulverized a vast swath of the Oklahoma City suburbs on May 20, 2013.

The Monday afternoon storm carved a trail through the area as much as two miles wide and 17 miles long. Hardest hit was Moore, Oklahoma -- a suburban town of about 56,000 and the site of eerily similar twisters in 1999 and again four years later.

Helicopter images showed large tracts of Moore completely leveled by what the National Weather Service says was at least an EF-4 tornado with winds in excess of 166 mph. The tornado stayed on the ground for 40 minutes.

The state medical examiner's office said 24 people were confirmed dead, including nine children.Earlier reports claiming that there were 51 deaths were erroneous, but the official death toll is unclear and could still rise. More than 230 people were injured in the storm and at least 100 people were pulled alive from the rubble by rescuers.

Thu, 28 Apr 2011 01:15:06 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/the-worst-tornadoes-in-history/drake-bird
<![CDATA[10 Things to Know About Earthquakes]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/10-things-to-know-about-earthquakes/analise.dubner?source=rss
While we in earthquake-prone places like California tend to get blase about the ground shaking ( aw hell, my coffee spilled! ), even the most unaffected of us feel that little niggle of fear whenever the walls start to shake... will this be a big one? These are some of the most basic things about earthquakes: what we know about them, why they happen and what they can do. This is not a safety list, but more of a list of facts about the most basic elements of an earthquake... what kinds there are, what causes them, the types of faults, etc.

Something to note is that it really is only recently (within the last 30-40 years) that we have really even begun to understand these dangerous natural events. Imagine what it must have been like 3,000 years ago when you had to not only deal with your hut collapsing on top of you, but having to wonder what you did that made your gods get so pissed off. Peruse this fascinating stuff about earthquakes, many of which are great earthquake facts for kids, and learn up! That Cascadia fault isn't going to stay put for long!
10 Things to Know About Earthquakes,


From what we know from recorded history, earthquakes occur in the same general patterns year after year, principally in three large zones of the earth.

The world's greatest earthquake belt, the circum-Pacific seismic belt, is found along the rim of the Pacific Ocean, where about 81 percent of the world's largest earthquakes occur. It has earned the nickname "Ring of Fire". The belt extends from Chile, northward along the South American coast through Central America, Mexico, the West Coast of the United States, and the southern part of Alaska, through the Aleutian Islands to Japan, the Philippine Islands, New Guinea, the island groups of the Southwest Pacific, and to New Zealand. This is a region of young, growing mountains and deep ocean trenches which invariably parallel mountain chains. Earthquakes necessarily accompany elevation changes in mountains, the higher part of the earth's crust, and changes in the ocean trenches, the lower part.

The second important belt, the Alpide, extends from Java to Sumatra through the Himalayas, the Mediterranean, and out into the Atlantic. This belt accounts for about 17 percent of the world's largest earthquakes, including some of the most destructive.

The third prominent belt follows the submerged mid-Atlantic Ridge, which, you know... middle of the ocean.
The Epicenter

The epicenter is directly above the point where the fault begins to rupture, and in most cases, it is the area of greatest damage. However, in larger events, the length of the fault rupture is much longer, and damage can be spread across the rupture zone.

The point where the energy is released is called the focus and the focal depth is the depth beneath the earth's surface where the energy release originates. The epicenter is the point on the earth's surface directly above the focus. From here, the energy released spreads out in rings moving across the surface - not unlike those caused when a rock hits still water.

When you boil it down, despite the simplicity of classification, earthquakes are all about three basic types of elastic waves.

Two of the three propagate within a body of rock. The faster of these body waves is called the primary or P wave. As it spreads out, it alternately pushes (compresses) and pulls (dilates) the rock. These P waves are able to travel through both solid rock, such as granite mountains, and liquid material, such as volcanic magma or the water of the oceans.

The slower wave through the body of rock is called the secondary or S wave. As an S wave moves, it shears the rock sideways at right angles to the direction of travel. If a liquid is sheared sideways or twisted, it will not spring back, hence S waves can only move through solids like rock.

(In most earthquakes, the P waves are felt first. The effect is similar to a sonic boom that bumps and rattles windows. Some seconds later, the S waves arrive with their up-and-down and side-to-side motion, shaking the ground surface vertically and horizontally. This is the wave motion that is so damaging to structures.)

The third type of wave is called a surface wave, because its motion is restricted to near the ground surface. Just like the ripples of water that travel across a lake.bThese kinds of waves can be divided into two types. The first is called a Love wave. It moves the ground from side to side in a horizontal plane but at right angles to the direction of propagation. The horizontal shaking of Love waves is particuly damaging to the foundations of structures. The second type of surface wave is known as a Rayleigh wave. Like rolling ocean waves, Rayleigh waves wave move both vertically and horizontally in a vertical plane pointed in the direction in which the waves are travelling.

Normal fault. These are described as being nearly vertical and occur in areas where earth's plates are pulled apart because of a divergent plate boundary nearby. On this fault, the hanging wall pushes down on the footwall. For reference, the hanging wall is the rock pushed above the fault plane and the footwall is the rock below the plane. The fault plane is the flat surface representing the fracture line of the fault.

Reverse fault. These are created when the earth's crust is compressed when two plates collide. Here the hanging wall pushes up and the footwall pushes down.

Strike-slip fault is a horizontal fault where the areas of rock slide past one another. These occur in areas where there is a transform plate boundary. The San Andreas fault in California is an example of a strike-slip fault

Thrust Fault When thrust faults are exposed on the surface overburdened material lies over the main block. They are normally associated with areas of folded surfaces and or mountainous regions. The dip angles of thrust faults are normally not as steep as a normal fault.

There are several different kinds of quakes:

-Volcanic eruptions
-Meteor impacts
-Underground explosions
-Collapsing structures

Obviously, the one we are really talking about is the first kind... tectonic... which is the movement of the earth's plates.

Richter MagnitudeTypical Maximum
Modified Mercalli Intensity
1.0 - 3.0I
3.0 - 3.9II - III
4.0 - 4.9IV - V
5.0 - 5.9VI - VII
6.0 - 6.9VII - IX
7.0+VIII or higher
Two different but equally important types of scales are commonly used to describe earthquakes. The original force or energy of an earthquake is measured on a magnitude scale, while the intensity of shaking occurring at any given point is measured on an intensity scale.

The Richter Scale is used to rate the magnitude of an earthquake -- the amount of energy it released. This is calculated using information gathered by a seismograph. The Richter Scale is logarithmic, meaning that whole-number jumps indicate a tenfold increase. In this case, the increase is in wave amplitude. That is, the wave amplitude in a level 6 earthquake is 10 times greater than in a level 5 earthquake, and the amplitude increases 100 times between a level 7 earthquake and a level 9 earthquake. The amount of energy released increases 31.7 times between whole number values. Generally, you won't see much damage from earthquakes that rate below 4 on the Richter Scale. Major earthquakes generally register at 7 or above.

The Mercalli intensity scale is used for measuring the intensity of an earthquake. The scale quantifies the effects of an earthquake on the Earth's surface, humans, objects of nature, and man-made structures on a scale of I through XII, with I meaning "not felt", and XII meaning "total destruction". Data is gathered from individuals who have experienced the quake, and an intensity value will be given to their location.

Our Lithosphere is comprised of many plates that slide over the lubricating athenosphere layer. At the boundaries between these huge plates of soil and rock, three different things can happen:

1. Plates can move apart If two plates are moving apart from each other, hot, molten rock flows up from the layers of mantle below the lithosphere. This magma comes out on the surface (mostly at the bottom of the ocean), where it is called lava. As the lava cools, it hardens to form new lithosphere material, filling in the gap. This is called a divergent plate boundary.

2. Plates can push together If the two plates are moving toward each other, one plate typically pushes under the other one. This subducting plate sinks into the lower mantle layers, where it melts. At some boundaries where two plates meet, neither plate is in a position to subduct under the other, so they both push against each other to form mountains. The lines where plates push toward each other are called convergent plate boundaries.

3. Plates slide against each other At other boundaries, plates simply slide by each other -- one moves north and one moves south, for example. While the plates don't drift directly into each other at these transform boundaries, they are pushed tightly together. A great deal of tension builds at the boundary.
The Worst

By Magnitude - Not deaths.

1. May 22, 1960 Valdivia, Chile 1960 Valdivia earthquake 9.5
2. March 27, 1964 Prince William Sound, USA 1964 Alaska earthquake 9.2
3. December 26, 2004 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake 9.1
4. November 4, 1952 Kamchatka earthquakes 9.0
5. August 13, 1868 1868 Arica earthquake 9.0
6. January 26, 1700 1700 Cascadia earthquake 8.9
7. March 11, 2011 2011 Sendai earthquake 8.9
8. February 27, 2010 2010 Chile earthquake 8.8
9. January 31, 1906 1906 Ecuador-Colombia earthquake 8.8
10. November 25, 1833 1833 Sumatra earthquake 8.8

The worst earthquakes listed by death toll
What To Do

You Should:
DROP down onto your hands and knees (before the earthquakes knocks you down). This position protects you from falling but allows you to still move if necessary.
COVER your head and neck (and your entire body if possible) under a sturdy table or desk. If there is no shelter nearby, only then should you get down near an interior wall (or next to low-lying furniture that won't fall on you), and cover your head and neck with your arms and hands.
HOLD ON to your shelter (or to your head and neck) until the shaking stops. Be prepared to move with your shelter if the shaking shifts it around.

You Should NOT:
RUN OUTSIDE or to other rooms during shaking: The area near the exterior walls of a building is the most dangerous place to be. Windows, facades and architectural details are often the first parts of the building to collapse. To stay away from this danger zone, stay inside if you are inside and outside if you are outside. Also, shaking can be so strong that you will not be able to move far without falling down, and objects may fall or be thrown at you that you do not expect. Injuries can be avoided if you drop to the ground before the earthquake drops you.

DO NOT stand in a doorway. True- if you live in an old, unreinforced adobe house or some older woodframe houses, maybe. But in modern houses, doorways are no stronger than any other part of the house, and the doorway does not protect you from the most likely source of injury- falling or flying objects. You also may not be able to brace yourself in the door during strong shaking. You are safer under a table.

DO NOT READ THE "TRIANGLE OF LIFE" email and believe it. If you get it, please refer the sender to www.earthquakecountry.info/dropcoverholdon/. In recent years, this e-mail has been circulating which describes an alternative to the long-established "Drop, Cover, and Hold On" advice. The so-called "triangle of life" and some of the other actions recommended in the e-mail are potentially life threatening. The "triangle of life" advice (always get next to a table rather than underneath it) is based on several wrong assumptions:

-buildings always collapse in earthquakes (wrong- especially in developed nations, and flat "pancake" collapse is rare anywhere);
-when buildings collapse they always crush all furniture inside (wrong- people DO survive under furniture or other shelters);
-people can always anticipate how their building might collapse and anticipate the location of survivable void spaces (wrong- the direction of shaking and unique structural aspects of the building make this nearly impossible)
-during strong shaking people can move to a desired location (wrong- strong shaking can make moving very difficult and dangerous).

The strongest earthquakes that occur can result in ground rupture, causing damage to bridges, dams, roads, railroad tracks, and the foundations of buildings. They can also cause landslides and avalanches as a result of the shaking.

Intense shaking can also cause liquification of ground built on landfill when water mains break. The shaking of an earthquake is increased in areas of landfill when the density of the ground is loose.

Another major cause of damage is the fires that ignite when power lines fall and gas lines rupture. In addition, undersea earthquakes can generate tsunamis that are capable of traveling great distances from the epicenter and cause significant damage to coastal communities.

Fri, 11 Mar 2011 03:14:49 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/10-things-to-know-about-earthquakes/analise.dubner
<![CDATA[The Worst Tsunamis in History]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/the-worst-tsunamis-in-history/drake-bird?source=rss

List of the worst tsunamis in history, with pictures where possible. From the most recent, current tsunamis to those of the past, this list has them all. What was the worst tsunami ever? With death tolls reaching tragic proportions, these are not only the worst tsunamis environmentally, they're also the deadliest.

World disasters such as these famous natural catastrophes can affect the world on a global scale and test the preparedness and relief our governments can provide. What was the worst tsunamis in history? Such great disasters, despite the destruction and natural hazards that come along with them, can also bring forth examples of how big our hearts are as we as individuals provide aid alongside our countries. This list gives us the most major examples. Fortunately, events such as these are not always so disastrous, and can provide us with the opportunity to make plans for when these epic events occur. One thing's for sure, they'll make you think twice about the ocean next time you head out to catch a big wave.

If you're in shock over the size of some of the largest tsunamis ever recorded, try checking out the worst earthquakes, biggest tornadoes, and most tragic volcanic eruptions in history. They'll really enlighten you on the power of mother nature.
The Worst Tsunamis in History,

2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami
On December 26, 2004, an earthquake released close to 23,000 Hiroshima-type atomic bombs mount of energy from beneath the Earth's surface. This unleashed a series of killer waves across the Indian Ocean that traveled as fast as a jet airliner. The 9.0 magnitude earthquake was the largest magnitude earthquake in 40 years and the tsunami it generated traveled as much as 3,000 miles to Africa. About 229,866 were found dead and one-third of the death toll were young children who were not strong enough to fight against the force of the waves.
1826 Japanese Earthquake
27000 Dead
1771 Great Yaeyama Tsunami
On April 24, 1771, the Yaeyama Great Earthquake caused the formation of the 1771 Great Yaeyama Tsunami. The tsunami hit both the Ishigaki and Miyakojima Island of Japan and killed a total of 12,000 people. Agriculture was severely damaged and the population decreased about one-third of what it was. The tsunami at Ishigaki reportedly reached a height of 262 feet.
1868 Arica Earthquake/Tsunami
The estimated 8.5 to 9.0 magnitude earthquake near Arica (then part of Peru, now part of Chile) in 1868 nearly destroyed all of Arica and its surrounding cities. The tsunami it produced almost completely destroyed the port city of Pisco. It also caused some damage in Hawaii, New Zealand and Japan. About 25,674 casualties were reported.
1896 Meiji-Sanriku Earthquake
The 1896 Meiji-Sanriku earthquake hit Japan on a day when the country was celebrating both the return of soldiers from the Sinto Japanese War and a Shinto holiday. The 7.2 magnitude earthquake that took place was small but the tsunami that struck the coast of Sanriku 35 minutes later was much greater. Waves as high as 125 feet were measured and nearly 9,000 homes were destroyed. 22,070 were reported dead and an unusually high count of victims with fractured skulls and broken or missing limbs. Hawaii also suffered some destruction from the tsunami as waves of 30 feet were measured there.
1792 Mount Unzen
The 1792 eruption of Mount Unzen in western Kyushu, Japan is the most deadliest volcanic eruption ever in Japan. It caused a megatsunami that reached up to 330 feet and killed 15,030 people.
1908 Messina Earthquake/Tsunami
An earthquake of 7.1 hit Messina, a city in the island of Sicily, on December 28, 1908. The earthquake shook for 30 to 40 seconds and moments after, a tsunami of 40 feet high formed and struck the nearby coasts. At the time, the buildings there were not made earthquake resistent and 93% of the structures in Messina were destroyed. Entire families were buried under heavy roofing and debris and were still being discovered and pulled out days later. Other families, were not so lucky and the natural catastrophe numbered about 123,000 dead.
1755 Lisbon Earthquake/Tsunami/Fire
Geologists today estimate that the 1755 Lisbon earthquake, also known as the Great Lisbon Earthquake, was close to a magnitude of 9 on the moment magnitude scale. With an epicenter in the Atlantic Ocean about 200 km of Cape St. Vincent in southern Portugal, the megathrust earthquake was one of the deadliest earthquakes in history. It was followed by fires and a tsunami that destroyed most of Lisbon in the Kingdom of Portugal. The tsunami occurred approximately 40 minutes after the earthquake and engulfed the harbour, downtown and other nearby cities. Tsunamis as tall as 66 feet also swept the coast of North Africa and struck islands across the Atlantic like Martinique and Barbados. A ten-foot tsunami also hit Cornwall on the southern English coast and Galway on the west coast of Ireland. A total of 100,000 were reported dead from the disaster.
1883 Eruption of Krakatoa
It's not only earthquakes that can caused monstrous tsunamis; volcanic eruptions do the same as well. On August 27, 1883, four huge eruptions from the Krakatoa volcano in Indonesia took place, resulting in four different tsunamis over 100 feet tall. There were absolutely no survivors at the island of Sebesi, the nearest island to the volcano and bodies were found floating in the ocean for weeks after the event. The total death total was around 36,000.
1707 Hoei Earthquake
The 1707 Hoei earthquake is the only earthquake to have ruptured all segments of the Nankai megathrust simultaneously and is the second largest earthquake to have ever hit Japan besides the 2011 Tohoku earthquake. The estimated magnitude of the quake was 8.6. The consequent tsunami ran along the southwestern coast of Kochi and ran up to an average of 25 feet to 32 feet in some places. The total dead were estimated to be 30,000.

Thu, 24 Feb 2011 08:25:00 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/the-worst-tsunamis-in-history/drake-bird
<![CDATA[The Worst Earthquakes in History]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/the-worst-earthquakes-in-history/drake-bird?source=rss
When the earth starts shakin' and the ground starts quakin', it can only be one thing: an earthquake. We've put together a list of some of the deadliest earthquakes throughout history, from some of the more current quakes of recent times, to earthquakes that happened long ago. With death tolls reaching tragic proportions, these are not only the worst earthquakes environmentally; they are also the most dangerous.

The deadliest earthquake on record hit the Chinese province of Shaanxi back in 1556. The 8.0-magnitude tremor killed an estimated 830,000 people - almost 60% of the population - and wiped out a 520-mile wide area. Just like the worst earthquakes of the 20th century, this quake occurred with no warning, and was followed by a series of aftershocks that wiped out the town.

Unfortunately, this quake was not the first - or the last - to strike and claim thousands of lives. Over three million people have been killed by earthquakes throughout the years, and many more have lost their lives during the resulting tsunamis that followed.  

What are the most tragic earthquakes in history? Check out our list of incredibly deadly earthquakes below, and be sure to let u know what you think in the comment section. 

The Worst Earthquakes in History,

1920 Haiyuan earthquake
235,502 dead on December 16, 1920
2004 Indonesian earthquake
230,210+ dead on December 26, 2004
1138 Aleppo earthquake
230,000 dead on October 11, 1138
856 Damghan earthquake
200,000 dead on December 22, 856
1556 Shaanxi Earthquake
820,000-830,000 dead on January 23, 1556
1976 Tangshan earthquake
242,419–779,000 dead on July 28, 1976
2010 Haiti earthquake
222,570 dead on January 12, 2010
526 Antioch earthquake
250,000 dead on May 21, 525
893 Ardabil earthquake
150,000 dead on March 22, 893
1923 Great Kanto earthquake
142,000 dead on September 1, 1923

Thu, 24 Feb 2011 08:24:53 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/the-worst-earthquakes-in-history/drake-bird
<![CDATA[The Worst Volcanic Eruptions in History]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/the-worst-volcanic-eruptions-in-history/drake-bird?source=rss
From the most recent, current volcanic eruptions to those of the past, this list names the largest volcanic eruptions in history. With volcanic death tolls reaching tragic proportions, these are not only the biggest and worst volcanic eruptions environmentally, they're also the deadliest. World disasters like volcano eruptions can affect the world on a global scale and test the preparedness and relief our governments can provide. Luckily for the human race, none of these have been supervolcanoes.

Volcanoes are vents in the Earth's surface where molten rock, ash, and gases can erupt or ooze out. Most volcanoes are located along the Pacific Ring of Fire, where tectonic plates can slide beneath one another and cause a disturbance. The size of the volcano eruption depends on how much time a volcano has had to build up pressure -- some of the biggest volcano disasters came after a long period of dormancy.
What are the worst volcanic eruptions ever? Such great disasters, despite the destruction and natural hazards that come along with them, can also bring forth examples of how big our hearts are as we as individuals provide aid alongside our countries. These historic volcanic eruptions caused great disaster, and were certainly some of the biggest ever recorded on earth.
The Worst Volcanic Eruptions in History,

Mount Tambora
The biggest volcanic eruption in human history occurred in 1815 on the Indonesian island of Sumbawa, leaving 100,000 dead. There was between six months and three years of steaming and small eruptions after the initial one. Because of the 400 million ton cloud of gas the volcano created, the earth began to cool and 1816 became known as "The Year Without Summer" because of the low temperatures, which killed crops and led to mass starvation.
Mount Unzen
Mount Unzen is located in a cluster of volcanoes in Japan's Shimabara Peninsula. Mount Unzen's 1792 eruption triggered an avalanche from Mount Mayuyama. The landslide created a tsunami that killed 15,000 people.
Mount Kelud

This particularly active Indonesian volcano is especially deadly because its crater lake has caused lahars, which killed 10,000 in a 1586 explosion and 5,000 in 1919. Dams and drainage tunnels have been built since then to protect nearby villages from future volcanic eruptions.

In 1783 Laki, a volcano in Iceland, exploded. The 120 million tons of gas that Laki emitted during the eight-month eruption killed 20% of Iceland's population (approx. 9,350 people), due to famine. The volcanic eruption had one of the greatest global impacts in history as the sulfur out pour caused crop failures in Europe, droughts in India and famine in Japan and Egypt. Environmental historians have even conjectured that Laki's eruption could have helped spark the French Revolution, as famine was one of the key issues the people raised against the French monarchy.
Santa Maria
Before its eruption in 1902, the Santa Maria Volcano, located in Guatemala, had been dormant for 500 years. Local people around the volcano were unable to detect the volcano's activity for this reason. 6,000 were killed by the eruption itself, which released 5.5 cubic kilometers of magma. An outbreak of malaria that followed the eruption killed many more. The city of Quezaltenango is located directly under the volcano and a new lava dome complex called Santiaguito has been forming in the crater which the eruption left.

The volcanic island, which is between the Indonesian islands Java and Sumatra, erupted in 1883 with a force 13,000 times that of the atomic bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima in 1945. Over 36,000 people died. The explosion holds the record for the loudest sound ever heard. The sound was heard over 3,000 miles away from its origin point. The eruption produced a 130 foot high tsunami, which destroyed villages and killed 90 percent of the total people who died in the disaster.

Mount Vesuvius
The famous Italian volcano, the only active one on the European continent, erupted in 79 AD, killing at least 16,000 people with suffocating ash and instantly decimating Pompei and Herculeneam. Excavations beginning in the 19th century have been uncovering the skeletal remains of the volcano's victims. The volcano has erupted 30 times since then and scientists predict that the next eruption will be terrible, endangering the lives of at least 600,000 Italians living within its red zone.
Mount Pelée
Mount Pelee is a volcano on Martinique, the Caribbean island which was colonized by the French. On May 2, 1902 the rivers in St. Pierre were filled with boulders and trees from the mountain and the air was contaminated with sulfur. The eruption produced a tsunami that flooded the city. One side of the volcano collapsed, releasing boiling water and mud into the sugar farms and burying people alive. The eruption is known as the deadliest in the 20th century, killing at least 29,000 people.
Nevado del Ruiz

Recorded as the second deadliest volcanic eruption in the 20th century, the Nevado del Ruiz eruption, known as the Armero tragedy of 1985, killed at least 23,000. The Nevado del Ruiz is the northernmost volcano in the Andean Volcanic Belt, located in Tolima, Colombia. The eruption produced several lahars and one reached Armero, a little town located 48 kilometers from the summit of the volcano, where 20,000 of 29,000 inhabitants died. The eruption was Colombia's worst natural disaster and is estimated to have cost $1 billion.

Sat, 19 Feb 2011 08:11:34 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/the-worst-volcanic-eruptions-in-history/drake-bird
<![CDATA[The Worst Droughts and Famines in History]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/the-worst-droughts-and-famines-in-history/drake-bird?source=rss

Wiping out portions of the populations in these unfortunate areas, the worst droughts and famines in history date back several centuries and chronicle some of the worst natural disasters on record. What are the worst droughts in history? Sadly, droughts and famines still occur to this day with starvation and malnutrition an unfavorable reality in many parts of the world.

What are the worst famines of all time? Famine and drought differ from other devastating natural disasters like the worst earthquakes and the most destructive tornadoes in the length of time of the suffering. Tornadoes, earthquakes, and tsunamis last a matter of minutes, while famine and drought can last years at a time. Similarly, as many other natural disasters are considered acts of God, many of these historical famines were party caused by poor policies by local governments.

To put things in perspective a bit more, the deaths from the worst famine in history greatly exceed all the deaths in the worst earthquakes of the 21st century combined. Affecting China from 1958 to 1961, the recent Great Chinese Famine claimed an estimated 43 million lives. That is more than the entire modern population of Canada.

As sad as it is, if nothing else, this history of famine and drought has brought awareness to the ongoing issues of malnutrition and starvation. While both continue to this day, there are also organizations and charities trying their best to end this unfortunate reality.
The Worst Droughts and Famines in History,

Great European Famine
Creating the worst famine ever seen in Europe, the Great Famine of 1315–1317, also known as the Great European Famine, was actually a series of crises. The tragedy, that killed an estimated 7.5 million people, was caused by strange weather and unrelenting rains.
Soviet Famine of 1932-–33
Affecting the top grain-producing areas of the Soviet Union over several months, the Soviet famine of 1932–1933 is remembered by some as the Holodomor, a term that translates to "hungry mass death." Between seven and 10 million were killed in the area, which is now part of the Ukraine and Siberia, among other areas.
Chinese Famine of 1936
Hitting China over a few months in 1936, the Asian country lost an estimated five million people during the Chinese Famine of 1936. This incident was one of several to affect China during the first part of the 20th century.
Russian Famine of 1921
Though it may have killed as many as 10 million, the Russian Famine of 1921 is considered to have resulted in five million deaths. This disaster affected the Volga-Ural region and was believed to be as a result of hard times during Word War I.
Indian Famine
Affecting the presidencies and provinces of British India, the Indian Famine was a six-year event that took place between 1896 and 1902. One of many famines to hit India throughout the years, this one was the worst, claiming an estimated 19 million lives.
Bengal Famine of 1770
Killing one-third of the population of Bengal over a five-year period, the Bengal Famine of 1770 took place between 1969 and 1773 in what is now parts of Bangladesh. An estimated 15 million perished in the famine, which was blamed on greedy principles from the British East India Company's rule.
Northern Chinese Famine
As the name suggests, the Northern Chinese Famine affected the northern portion of the country of China. As the fifth-worst famine in history, this disaster lasted from 1876 to 1879 and is believed to have killed 13 million people.
Indian Great Famine of 1876-–78
Known simply as the Great Famine of 1876–78, this tragedy that took the lives of as many as 10.3 million, affected over 250,000 square miles in India. The two-year famine also distressed over 58 million in the Madras, Mysore, Hyderabad and Bombay areas.
Great Chinese Famine
Lasting three years from 1958 to 1961, the Great Chinese Famine is the worst on record. While statistics of the loss of life are disputed, as few as 15 million and as many as 43 million were killed as a result.
Chinese Famine of 1907
Coming in second, a brief but deadly famine hit China in 1907 and is accordingly known as the Chinese Famine of 1907. In a matter of months an estimated 24 million people were killed.

Fri, 18 Feb 2011 01:31:30 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/the-worst-droughts-and-famines-in-history/drake-bird
<![CDATA[The 13 Scariest Viruses on Earth Today]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/the-top-13-most-incredible-viruses-on-earth/analise.dubner?source=rss

They say these guys have existed since the beginning of life on Earth. As far back as there's a plant or animal record, there are viruses. Life has adapted, changed, grown... and still the virus plagues it. It has been re-inventing itself over and over again in order to outwit, outlast and outplay its victims. They started as humble messengers, genetic strands that carried hereditary information from newly developed life to its offspring. As life transformed and become more complex, viruses lost their primary function when cells took over their role.

But the virus didn't take so well to being fired, and like any disgruntled ex-employee, began a millennia-spanning march to destroy that which it no longer served. They became unstoppable parasites, infecting rather than exchanging genes with their hosts; proscribing each cell with their own genetic formula. They developed the ability to jump from species to species by changing their genetic material to fit the host they infected.

The virus of today is highly complex and nearly impossible to control or contain. Over the past million+ years, they've developed a level of survivalism and efficiency that is astounding to behold... even to comprehend... even as we suffer from their success, its impossible not to admire them. We keep studying, keep trying to find new ways to defeat them, and they continue to calmly mutate around every new thing we throw at them.

Alive or dead? So far there has been no known form of life on Earth that is not susceptible to deadly viruses. They are small enough to hide between light waves, too small to be seen by anything but an electron microscope. It can lie dormant for long periods of time, indefinitely in some cases. It is not technically a life form, but you can ask the question: is the virus the most successful organism in the history of our planet?

We have been struggling with the deadliest, worst viruses since the beginning of humanity itself. Whether you've suffered from the common cold or something more rare and gut wrenching, you've definitely come into contact with a human virus. The names of viruses on this list should strike fear into your very heart. Just thank the starts that you've never caught on of these dangerous, deadly strains.

(PS. Before you head to the comments section in a huff, the Black Death was not a virus, it was bacterial.)
The 13 Scariest Viruses on Earth Today,

Ebola virus disease
Typically less than 100 lives a year. UPDATE: A severe Ebola outbreak was detected in West Africa in March 2014. The number of deaths in this latest outbreak has outnumbered all other known cases from previous outbreaks combined. The World Health Organization is reporting nearly 2,000 deaths in this latest outbreak. 

Once a person is infected with the virus, the disease has an incubation period of 2-21 days; however, some infected persons are asymptomatic. Initial symptoms are sudden malaise, headache, and muscle pain, progressing to high fever, vomiting, severe hemorrhaging (internally and out of the eyes and mouth) and in 50%-90% of patients, death, usually within days. The likelihood of death is governed by the virulence of the particular Ebola strain involved. Ebola virus is transmitted in body fluids and secretions; there is no evidence of transmission by casual contact.

There is no vaccine and no cure.
Hepatitis B

521,000 Deaths a Year

A third of the World’s population (over 2 billion people) has come in contact with this virus, including 350 million chronic carriers. In China and other parts of Asia, up to 10% of the adult population is chronically infected. The symptoms of acute hepatitis B include yellowing of the skin of eyes, dark urine, vomiting, nausea, extreme fatigue, and abdominal pain. Luckily, more than 95% of people who contract the virus as adults or older children will make a full recovery and develop immunity to the disease. In other people, however, hepatitis B can bring on chronic liver failure due to cirrhosis or cancer.
Hepatitis C

56,000 Deaths a Year

An estimated 200-300 million people worldwide are infected with hepatitis C. Most people infected with hepatitis C don’t have any symptoms and feel fine for years. However, liver damage invariably rears its ugly head over time, often decades after first infection. In fact, 70% of those infected develop chronic liver disease, 15% are struck with cirrhosis and 5% can die from liver cancer or cirrhosis. In the USA, hepatitis C is the primary reason for liver transplants.

There is no cure, no vaccine.

3.1 Million Lives a Year

Human Immunodeficiency Virus has claimed the lives of more than 25 million people since 1981. HIV gets to the immune system by infecting important cells, including helper cells called CD4+ T cells, plus macrophanges and dendritic cells. Once the virus has taken hold, it systematically kills these cells, damaging the infected person’s immunity and leaving them more at risk from infections. The majority of people infected with HIV go on to develop AIDS. Once a patient has AIDS common infections and tumours normally controlled by the CD4+ T cells start to affect the person.

In the latter stages of the disease, pneumonia and various types of herpes can infect the patient and cause death.

500,000 Deaths a Year

Influenza has been a prolific killer for centuries. The symptoms of influenza were first described more than 2,400 years ago by Hippocrates. Pandemics generally occur three times a century, and can cause millions of deaths. The most fatal pandemic on record was the Spanish flu outbreak in 1918, which caused between 20 million and 100 million deaths. In order to invade a host, the virus shell includes proteins that bind themselves to receptors on the outside of cells in the lungs and air passages of the victim. Once the virus has latched itself onto the cell it takes over so much of its machinery that the cell dies. Dead cells in the airways cause a runny nose and sore throat. Too many dead cells in the lungs causes death.

Vaccinations against the flu are common in developed countries. However, a vaccination that is effective one year may not necessarily work the next year, due to the way the rate at which a flu virus evolves and the fact that new strains will soon replace older ones.

197,000 Deaths a Year

Measles, also known as Rubeola, has done a pretty good job of killing people throughout the ages. Over the last 150 years, the virus has been responsible for the deaths of around 200 million people. The fatality rate from measles for otherwise healthy people in developed countries is 3 deaths per thousand cases, or 0.3%. In underdeveloped nations with high rates of malnutrition and poor healthcare, fatality rates have been as high as 28%. In immunocompromised patients (e.g. people with AIDS) the fatality rate is approximately 30%.

During the 1850s, measles killed a fifth of Hawaii's people. In 1875, measles killed over 40,000 Fijians, approximately one-third of the population. In the 19th century, the disease decimated the Andamanese population. In 1954, the virus causing the disease was isolated from an 11-year old boy from the United States, David Edmonston, and adapted and propagated on chick embryo tissue culture.

To date, 21 strains of the measles virus have been identified.


61,000 Lives a Year

According to the WHO, this merciless virus causes the deaths of more than half a million children every year. In fact, by the age of five, virtually every child on the planet has been infected with the virus at least once. Immunity builds up with each infection, so subsequent infections are milder. However, in areas where adequate healthcare is limited the disease is often fatal. Rotavirus infection usually occurs through ingestion of contaminated stool. Because the virus is able to live a long time outside of the host, transmission can occur through ingestion of contaminated food or water, or by coming into direct contact with contaminated surfaces, then putting hands in the mouth.
Once it’s made its way in, the rotavirus infects the cells that line the small intestine and multiplies. It emits an enterotoxin, which gives rise to gastroenteritis.

Officially eradicated - Due to it's long history, it impossible to estimate the carnage over the millennia

Smallpox localizes in small blood vessels of the skin and in the mouth and throat. In the skin, this results in a characteristic maculopapular rash, and later, raised fluid-filled blisters. It has an overall mortality rate of 30–35%. Smallpox is believed to have emerged in human populations about 10,000 BC. The disease killed an estimated 400,000 Europeans per year during the closing years of the 18th century (including five reigning monarchs), and was responsible for a third of all blindness. Of all those infected, 20–60%—and over 80% of infected children—died from the disease.

Smallpox was responsible for an estimated 300–500 million deaths during the 20th century alone. In the early 1950s an estimated 50 million cases of smallpox occurred in the world each year. As recently as 1967, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that 15 million people contracted the disease and that two million died in that year. After successful vaccination campaigns throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, the WHO certified the eradication of smallpox in December 1979.

Smallpox is one of only two infectious diseases to have been eradicated by humans, the other being Rinderpest, which was unofficially declared eradicated in October 2010.
Yellow fever

30,000 Deaths a Year

Yellow fever is an acute viral hemorrhagic disease transmitted by the bite of female mosquitoes and is found in tropical and subtropical areas in South America and Africa. The only known hosts of the virus are primates and several species of mosquito. The origin of the disease is most likely to be Africa, from where it was introduced to South America through the slave trade in the 16th century. Since the 17th century, several major epidemics of the disease have been recorded in the Americas, Africa and Europe. In the 19th century, yellow fever was deemed one of the most dangerous infectious diseases. Yellow fever presents in most cases with fever, nausea, and pain and it generally subsides after several days. In some patients, a toxic phase follows, in which liver damage with jaundice (giving the name of the disease) can occur and lead to death. Because of the increased bleeding tendency (bleeding diathesis), yellow fever belongs to the group of hemorrhagic fevers.

Since the 1980s, the number of cases of yellow fever has been increasing, making it a reemerging disease.
Hantavirus Infection

70,000 Deaths a Year

Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS) is a deadly disease transmitted by infected rodents through urine, droppings, or saliva. Humans can contract the disease when they breathe in aerosolized virus. HPS was first recognized in 1993 and has since been identified throughout the United States. Although rare, HPS is potentially deadly. Rodent control in and around the home remains the primary strategy for preventing hantavirus infection. Also known as House Mouse Flu. The symptoms, which are very similar to HFRS, include tachycardia and tachypnea. Such conditions can lead to a cardiopulmonary phase, where cardiovascular shock can occur, and hospitalization of the patient is required.

Fri, 03 Sep 2010 11:32:00 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/the-top-13-most-incredible-viruses-on-earth/analise.dubner
<![CDATA[Death By Volcano: People Who Died in Volcanic Eruptions]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/death-by-volcano-people-who-died-in-volcanic-eruptions/notable-famous-deaths?source=rss
In the wake of the volcanic ash eruption in Eyjafjallajökull, here is a list of notable people who died in volcanic eruptions. In the past 500 years, over 200,000 people have lost their lives due to volcano eruptions. This list includes famous volcanic eruption victims from all over the world. Read the names of the mountains turned deadly volcanoes in the discussion column. If you're looking for more volcano information check out the worst volcanic eruption and supervolcanoes list.
Death By Volcano: People Who Died in Volcanic Eruptions,

David A. Johnston
Mount St. Helens
Harry Glicken
Mount Unzen
Harry Randall Truman
Mount St. Helens
Katia and Maurice Krafft
Mount Unzen
Omayra Sánchez
Nevado del Ruiz
Pliny the Elder
Mount Vesuvius

Mon, 24 May 2010 00:05:26 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/death-by-volcano-people-who-died-in-volcanic-eruptions/notable-famous-deaths
<![CDATA[Classic Disaster Movies Of All Time]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/classic-disaster-movies-of-all-time/info-lists?source=rss
List of the disaster movies of all time. Not that all of these were called disaster films because they ended up being disaster films. But, all of these were either natural disaster movies or man made disaster based movies. The best disaster movie is still 'The Abyss' according to some critics. If you don't agree with this list, make your list of disaster movies of all time. Source: Information Please Database
Classic Disaster Movies Of All Time,

San Francisco



A Night to Remember


Runaway Train

The Abyss

The Hindenburg

The Poseidon Adventure

The Swarm

Sun, 24 Jan 2010 16:57:07 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/classic-disaster-movies-of-all-time/info-lists
<![CDATA[How To Survive a Disaster]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/how-to-survive-a-disaster/analise.dubner?source=rss
It could be that my most favoritest guilty pleasure is the consumption of disaster movies. Mostly because of what I learn so that I may be prepared when that next Meteor/Tsunami/Alien Invasion/Tornado/Earthquake/Monster/Climate Change comes along. How else are we going to be ready? I don't see any real guides out there. Who else do we have to turn to except these masterworks? Watch and learn... so the next time your windows start to shake or a giant fireball appears perfectly framed on the horizon, you will know just what you need to do to survive.
How To Survive a Disaster,

Choose Your Disaster Companions Wisely

Face it, your odds are poor if you don't have a dog or children. Sorry.

But you can mitigate this as best as possible by following the above rules carefully. One issue... if you happen to be married to someone who had children with a previous spouse, and the spouse shows up during that disaster? There's nothing we can do for you. I'm sorry. You're going to die. If, at any time, you act selfishly or express impatience or don't want to listen to the ex-spouse...that is the road to being horribly killed by debris of various kinds. Instead, you should always be selfless. If you know how to do something useful that no one else can do? You might last a little longer. It's helpful to hang out with folks who ARE jerks. Odds of your survival go up exponentially for every jerk in your party. Make friends with the kids or the dog. Stick close. There's still a really good chance you will end up giving your life for either or both, but I guess that's a better way to go out than being ironicallly crushed by something from space.

If you follow all these rules.... you still don't have that great of a chance unless you have those kids. So get spawning. It will be worth it in the long run. Plus you're going to have the experience of a lifetime. You're going to be able to break several laws of physics. You're going to be able to outrun actual freezing air. Not too many people ever get to see a train being literally chased by a crack opening up in the earth... or an aircraft carrier being dropped on the White House. Enjoy it.
Have Kids

This could tehnically fall into the same category as dogs. If you have a kid, there's no way that kid is going to die. Just trust me. Kids can't die in disasters. Stick close. Possibly duct-tape that child to your torso if you need to.

If you have neither a dog, nor a child, I recommend finding a family with one or both... preferably a family where the parents are divorced and (this is important), the ex is not nearby.
Press The Accelerator

The evidence shows that it pays to drive really, really fast in any given disastrous situation.

I know and you know that things like pyroclastic flow travels at upwards of 700 mph... that your tires would melt if you drove anywhere near lava... but don't worry. Press the accelerator. You'll make it. Is it a bus or a camper? Don't worry. Gun it. You can jump over caverns, buckling asphalt, falling bridges... you can outrun a shockwave in a station wagon if you just. Press. The. Accelerator. Same applies for airplanes, boats and trains. Give it a little more gas, grit your teeth in a panicky way.... it won't matter if the Earth is literally splitting open behind you. Buildings can be falling around you... just tilt the planes wings and push that handle-thingy harder. You're going to be fine.
Own A Dog

If you look at the evidence - and I have - the odds are the greatest that your dog will survive whatever terrible set of life-threatening circumstances any given disaster offers. Sure, owning that dog will put your own life in danger for when the time comes you have to go save it -- but trust me, it may seem impossible that you be able to save your dog in time... but you will. Dogs cannot die in disasters. They can outrun fireballs, survive F5 tornados and sniff out invading aliens. So hang on to Fido, because as long as he's with YOU, you're going to be ok.

Note: Whatever you do, don't hand him over a closing pressurized saftey gate! You're toast as soon as he leaves your hands.
Enjoy The View

While it seems counter-intuitive, when you are given the opportunity to witness destruction on a large scale, you can totally stand there and watch. Is a Supervolcano opening up in the valley in front of you? Sure, the smart person would turn and run (see rule #4) ... but you will have time to see it in action first. Stand there... you can drop your jaw open a little if you want, or even better -- have a moving moment with your estranged wife/husband/boyfriend/girlfriend ... but even though logic dictates a swelling caldera that, when it blows, will wipe out 75% of the earths population,would be something you should probably not be near? When are you going to get another opportunity to witness such a thing? Go ahead and watch the F5 tornado approaching or the continental shelf snapping off a few feet away. It's ok if a Tsunami wave is literally on the horizon.

You have time. You can always get in/on your camper/car/dirt bike and drive away (see #3).
Stay Away From National Monuments

Anyone who has watched even a few disaster movies knows this one.

If you live in a city with a well-known national monument... you might want to consider relocating. Disasters LOVE national monuments. Places to steer clear of? A partial list would be Paris, New York, DC, Hollywood, San Francisco, Seattle, Cairo, London and St. Louis. If you are in a place like Denver, Omaha or Boise, you are probably cool.

Bonus note: In the event of a disaster, the first thing you should definitely do is make sure you are nowhere near the White House.
Wait For It

Did your plane just get engulfed by flames and smoke as it was trying to take off? Sit back and have a drink. Give it a count of three and your plane will burst out of danger and fly to safety. Did someone in your party just spend 3 full minutes underwater? I know that it SEEMS like they should have run out of air and died, but not to worry. If the person you are waiting on is an authority figure like a dad or ex-cop or a plucky scientist... just wait. A hand will reach up and grasp the edge of the crevice or a head will break the surface of the water with a gasp. Totally fine.

Just wait for it.

Mon, 16 Nov 2009 02:25:12 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/how-to-survive-a-disaster/analise.dubner
<![CDATA[11 of the Deadliest, Most Destructive Hurricanes Ever]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/10-biggest-deadliest-most-destructive-hurricane_s-ever-/jeff419?source=rss
This list of the worst hurricanes ever includes photos of some of the most destructive natural disasters ever recorded. What were the biggest hurricanes in history? Every hurricane season, many thousands of miles of coastline around the world are threatened. Even scarier, the lives of people and animals settled along the shores are in grave danger from powerful winds and some of the strongest waters in the world. To get some sense of the proportion of the damage caused by these storms, here's a look back at the most destructive hurricanes ever recorded – simply the deadliest, largest, and worst hurricanes in history. Be careful out there. If you're interested in more natural disasters, check out the worst tsunamis, volcanic eruptions, wildfires, and earthquakes in history. They'll really put life into perspective for you.
11 of the Deadliest, Most Destructive Hurricanes Ever,

1970 Bhola cyclone
Taking the cake for the deadliest tropical cyclone ever recorded, the 1970 Bhola Cyclone hit East Pakistan (Bangladesh today) and India's West Bengal on November 12, 1970. While the exact death toll is unknown it is estimated that 300,000-500,000 people perished in the aftermath of this storm, making it one of the deadliest natural disasters in recent history.

This cyclone was not extremely large, reaching strengths equivalent of a Category 3 Hurricane. The killing power of this storm was almost completely attributed to the cyclone's surge, which flooded most of the low lying islands in the Ganges Delta, literally wiping villages and crops off the face of the Earth.
Hurricane Patricia
Hurricane Patricia is expected to be the strongest, most powerful hurricane ever recorded. It's headed towards Mexico at dangerous speeds as of October 23, 2015, but we won't know what the damage is like until after the weekend. Patricia is supposed to hit the coast of Acapulco and Puerto Vallarta - tourist hotspots on the Pacific Coast of Mexico.   

As of Friday morning, it already has a central pressure recording of 880 millibars, which is the lowest pressure rating of a cyclone storm in over 30 years. It's severity can be compared to Typhoon Haiyan, which hit the Philippines in 2013, and killed over 6,000 people. That storm, however, had a slightly higher pressure rating of 870 millibars, which is extremely bad news for those living in the soon-to-be-affected areas.   

Source: CNN

Typhoon Nina 1975
Not to be known as some regular typhoon, Super Typhoon Nina landed onto the scene with a bang, hitting China hard and quickly destroying the Banqiao Dam. The collapse of the Banqiao Dam led to such great flooding that it set off a series of dam collapses throughout China, greatly magnifying the damage caused by Typhoon Nina.

With a 100,000+ death toll, Super Typhoon Nina is the 2nd deadliest Typhoon in recorded history, though we think it should be #1 since the most deadly typhoon, which hit Haiphong, Vietnam in 1881, didn't even get a name.
The Great Hurricane of 1780
Holding the record as the deadliest Atlantic hurricane, this storm devastated Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Lesser Antilles, Bermuda, and possibly Florida and other States.

While the total damages are unknown, the death toll was well over 22,000 people, more than any other decade of Atlantic hurricanes.
Hurricane Andrew
Hurricane Andrew was the only named hurricane for the 1992 season, but boy, did it make it's mark. Wreaking havoc across the northwestern Bahamas, southern Florida and southwest Louisiana, Andrew caused $26.5 billion (USD 1992) in damage, though some sources place this number closer to $34 billion.

Even with all the destruction caused by Hurricane Andrew, the death toll was very low, with 26 deaths caused directly by the hurricane and 39 as secondary deaths.
Hurricane Iniki
When people think of Hawaii, they often imagine lazy days of surfing and long luaus that go into the night. The last thing most people think of is hurricanes, yet in September of 1992 that's just what they got.

Born from the strong El Nino warm phase of 91-94, Hurricane Iniki reached cateogry 4 level winds as the eye passed over the island of Kauaʻi.

Not surprisingly, the Hawaiians handled the effects of Hurricane Iniki amazingly well. Communities held parties to cook all the perishable food since the power was knocked out. Grocery stores offered free food to anyone who needed it, while most insisted on paying anyways. While there was some looting in the aftermath of the storm, it was very limited in comparison to what happened after Hurricane Katrina and other disasters.

Amazingly, there were only six deaths attributed to Hurricane Iniki even though the islanders were given less than 24 hours notice. The monetary damage, however, was huge for the small island, totalling over $1.8 billion (USD 1992).
Hurricane Pauline
Not happy to just be one of the most destructive Pacific hurricanes to make landfall in Mexico, Hurricane Pauline had to be one of the deadliest too.

Working it's way up the Mexican coastline, Pauline dumped torrential rainfalls with 16" of rain in Acapulco alone! The relentless downpour caused disastrous land slides in some of Mexico's poorest villages, killing roughly 250-400 people and leaving a striking 300,000 people homeless.

Beyond all the lives destroyed, Hurricane Pauline caused a massive amount of damage, exceeding $7.5 billion (USD 1997).
Hurricane Ike
Hurricane Ike is in the top three for most destructive hurricane's to ever hit the United States, with $24 billion (2008 USD) and with additional damage of $7.3 billion in Cuba, $200 million in the Bahamas, and $500 million in the Turks and Caicos, amounting to a total of $32 billion in damages.

Hurricane Ike resulted in at least 195 deaths, all the way from Haiti to Galveston and many places in between.
Galveston Hurricane of 1900
The year was 1900, the place was Galveston, Texas. On September 4th, a warning was released, saying a large tropical storm had just passed Cuba and was headed west across the Gulf of Mexico.

Even though the US Weather Bureau had warning that a large storm was on its way, the policy at the time was to avoid pesky words like "hurricane," or "tornado," to avoid giving people a chance to escape oops, I mean to avoid panic.

In this case, panic is really what the people of Galveston should have done, as there was a big ass storm on it's way, and they were grossly unprepared.

In 1900, Galveston was only about nine feet above sea level, which was a bit too low. When the Galveston Hurricane of 1900 made landfall on September 8th, it brought a 15-foot tall storm surge, along with 135mph winds, making it a category 4 hurricane. The surge was so powerful that it washed over the entire island, knocking buildings off their foundations, and then pounding them into scraps of wood. In total, over 3600 houses were destroyed.

The Galveston Hurricane is the deadliest natural disaster to ever hit the US, claiming over 6,000 lives. The total damages exceeded $20 million in 1900's dollars, which is over $500 million in today's dollars (inflation is no joke!).
Hurricane Kenna
Kenna, a category 5 hurricane, was the 3rd most intense Pacific hurricane to ever strike Mexico's West Coast. Hitting San Blas, Nayarit on October 25th, 2002, was the 3rd category 5 hurricane of the hurricane season. 140 mph winds and a 16-foot surge devastated the coastline, causing $101 million dollars in damage.

Tue, 01 Sep 2009 07:50:55 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/10-biggest-deadliest-most-destructive-hurricane_s-ever-/jeff419
<![CDATA[Fire Safety and Prevention Tips]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/fire-safety-and-prevention-tips/web-infoguy?source=rss
If anyone knows home fire safety, kids fire safety, fire safety training, etc. it's the Malibu West Fire Safe & Sustainability Council, who created this list of tips and tricks to help keep LA's most fire-prone areas safe during fire season. With brush fires burning all over Los Angeles, and fire season due to last another few months across the country, this list is a must-read for anyone looking to protect their family, their home and their sanity during the hot, dry fall months to come. Every summer in the Los Angeles County brings it's new set of fire troubles, but these are timeless advice of how to keep you and your loved once safe from harm.
Fire Safety and Prevention Tips,

Neighborhood Niceties
Do you have neighbors who are elderly or disabled, who might want to take steps to make their homes more fire safe but are physically unable to do so? Be a Good Samaritan and help them out. Teenagers can receive community service hours for volunteering to help their neighbors clear brush, install fireproof screening, move woodpiles, and so on. Remember, in a dense neighborhood, if your neighbor's home catches fire, it increases the chances that yours will burn, too.
Get Schooled

Do you know the emergency policies at your child's school? Most of our schools are surrounded by a large amount of defensible space (and you know they'll be a priority for firefighters!), so it's unlikely that evacuation would be necessary. But keep a copy of the school's emergency plan handy, so you'll know the school's policies in an emergency and where its evacuation centers are, just in case.

Close Doors
Close all the doors in your house as you evacuate – both interior and exterior – to slow the spread of fire. But leave the exterior doors unlocked so firefighters can take shelter from the fire inside the house if necessary.

If you've still got power, leave all the lights in your house on as you evacuate so firefighters will be able to see it better through heavy smoke.

Some MW residents have had their fire insurance canceled in recent years - even though they've never made any fire-related claims - because of our neighborhood's proximity to wildlands. What are your options if you get a nonrenewal notice from your insurance company? Here's a link to an article in today's LA Times on the subject:


What to do if you're stuck in a fire

From the LA County Fire Department brochure, "We have to stay…You don’t":



* Stay inside your home; it is safer than being outside or in a vehicle.
* Close all exterior doors (including your garage door after putting your car inside).
* Stay calm and initiate contact with your out-of-state relatives or friends.
* Call 911, and inform the dispatcher that you cannot evacuate.
* Fill sinks and bathtubs with water.
* Shelter in a room opposite the approaching fire.
* Stay away from perimeter walls.
* Close all interior doors, leaving them unlocked.
* Stay as calm as you can, and keep your family together.
* Fire fronts can take from 5 to 15 minutes or longer to pass.
* As hot as it gets inside your home, it is 4 to 5 times as hot outside.


* Try to drive to an area clear of vegetation, away from wires and trees.
* If on a winding road, try to park where the road curves out, not in.
* Close all windows and keep doors unlocked.
* Turn the air conditioner on, keep in ‘re-circulation’ or ’max’ mode.
* Cover yourself with a wool or cotton blanket or jacket.
* Attempt to call 911 and inform the dispatcher of your location.
* Wait for the fire front to pass.
* Keep in mind that there will probably be smoke in your car.
* After the fire front passes, if you see flames in your vehicle, wrap yourself in clothing/blankets and exit.
* Do not attempt to outrun a wildfire.


* Thoroughly check your home, yard, roof, and attic for fire or smoldering embers.
* Use a hose or fire extinguisher to extinguish any ‘hot spots’.
* Keep the doors and windows closed.
* Continue re-checking your home and yard for at least 12 hours.
* Update your out-of-state contact as to your status.

The LA County Fire Department is VERY clear – they DO NOT want you to stay behind when you’ve been ordered to evacuate. Before you choose to do so, they suggest that you ask yourself these questions:

1. Are you physically fit to fight small fires in and around your home for up to 10 hours or more?

2. Are you and your family members mentally, physically, and emotionally able to cope with the intense smoke, heat, stress, and noise of a brush fire while defending your home?

3. Do you have the necessary resources and equipment to effectively fight a fire?

4. Does your home have defensible pace of at least 200 feet, and is it cleared of flammable materials and vegetation?

5. Is your home constructed to resist fire?

"If you answered ’NO’ to any of these questions, you should plan to leave early and quickly. If you ultimately decide to stay, it is imperative that children, the elderly, disabled, and any persons with medical ailments, especially respiratory problems, comply with evacuation orders."

From the LA County Fire Department brochure, "We have to stay…You don’t"

We have to stay, you don't

All the emergency preparedness brochures stress that homeowners should identify two escape routes from their homes in the event of a fast-moving wildfire. Bear this in mind when you receive the order to evacuate – there will be a lot of other people trying to leave on the same road at the same time. Don’t wait until the last minute, or you might find yourself trying to escape, not evacuate.

Foil the Fire
If a fire's approaching, a roll or two of aluminum foil could be your best friend. Taped against the inside of your windows, it's a heat-reflective covering (especially for single-glazed windows, which are less resistant to heat than double-glazed models). Crumpled up. it's stopgap weatherstripping to keep embers from flying through the gaps in your leaky windows and doors and into the house. It can be used as a temporary seal on the bottom and sides of your garage door to keep the embers out, and if you have time to crawl in the attic, it'll do the same for your vents. A good thing to have on hand during fire season.
Before you evacuate, bring any flammable patio furniture inside, and close all of your windows and doors. Take down flammable, lightweight drapes and window coverings, and move furnishings away from windows and sliding glass doors to keep them from igniting in the intense heat of the fire. If you have heavy drapes, shutters, or metal blinds on your windows, pull them shut before you leave.
Water Your Garden

If you have time before you evacuate, water down your roof and any shrubs within 15 feet of your home. You can place lawn sprinklers on the roof to make this easier. (If you have a portable gas-powered pump for your pool, you can use that, too.) Fill trash cans and buckets with water, and place them around the exterior of your home to douse any embers that blow your way as the fire approaches. (Spot fires from embers have been reported miles away from the main firefront - it's one of the reasons that wind-driven fires can spread so quickly.)

Leave a Helping Hand
Before you evacuate, place a ladder against your house on the side opposite the approaching fire so firefighters can easily get to your roof. Leave a hose up there, too.

Mon, 31 Aug 2009 13:01:47 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/fire-safety-and-prevention-tips/web-infoguy