20,000 people died and 100,000 lost their homes in the 2001 earthquake at Bhuj, Gujarat, in India. Poor countries simply cannot afford engineering solutions as part of their hazard management plans, therefore the damage is greater than for comparable sized earthquakes in more economically developed countries. It is the buildings that kill people, not the earthquakes. The importance of ensuring fresh water supplies and fixing the infrastructure (roads etc) is explained.
Use as a comparison case study of the impact of an earthquake on an urban landscape in an LEDC with a similarly sized earthquake in an MEDC. Students could construct a table listing the issues that aid workers would face in each situation. Discuss which issues are common to both, which are unique and why. Investigate the costs of earthquake preparedness and recovery and, given a certain budget, debate which priorities funding should go towards. Examine the primary and secondary effects as well as the short and long term responses and the overall social, economic and environmental ramifications of the disaster.