Interest in hazard mitigation has grown in the past decade in response to the significant increase in the frequency and severity of natural and manmade disasters and the resulting loss of life and property and economic losses. Reducing the future impacts of disasters must be the foundation of any effective emergency management system or function.
Hazard mitigation efforts are most critical at the community level where land use and development decisions are made and construction codes and standards adopted and enforced. It is time that community leaders incorporated hazard mitigation into their decision making process not just for disaster issues but for everyday decisions on where and how a community grows and develops.
Business leaders and home owners must also incorporate hazard mitigation information and techniques into their decisions on where to locate their business or home or how to retrofit their business or home to protect their lives and livelihoods from disasters.
Promoting and investing in hazard mitigation efforts is the most direct way that families, businesses and communities can reduce the human and economic losses from future disasters.