Preparation and prediction

Preparation and prediction techniques can be very different in MEDCs and LEDCs.

MEDCs have the resources and technology to predict and monitor the occurrence of storms, eg using satellites and specially equipped aircraft. They are also equipped to train the emergency services appropriately and to educate people about necessary precautions.

Storm warnings can be issued to enable the population to evacuate or prepare themselves for the storm. People can prepare by storing food and water or boarding up their windows.

LEDCs are often less prepared. They may rely on aid (sometimes reluctantly) from MEDCs for the rescue and recovery process, as was the case with Cyclone Sidr in Bangladesh, November 2007.

Effects of tropical storms

Bangladeshi villager affected by cyclone Sidr
Bangladeshi villager affected by cyclone Sidr

The intense winds of tropical storms can destroy whole communities, buildings and communication networks. As well as their own destructive energy, the winds generate abnormally high waves and tidal surges. Sometimes the most destructive elements of a storm are the subsequent high seas and flooding.

MEDCs are better placed to reduce the effects of tropical storms because they have more financial, educational and technological resources to help deal with them. They better able to observe and predict storm behaviour and can invest in infrastructure to withstand storms - as well as spending more money on repairing the damage caused.