Hazards and Threats

There are many natural, technological or national security hazards that could occur in Alabama and result in an emergency or disaster. Hazards are those sources of potential danger or adverse conditions, but not all hazards have the same likelihood of occurring in a given time period. The likelihood of an event happening in that time period is calculated based on records of previous events in Alabama.

Assessing the risk of impact from a hazard is based on the likelihood of the event happening and on the effect of the event on physical elements (assets) in the community. Each asset has some vulnerability to hazards. For example, buildings are vulnerable to high winds and floods.  The level of risk to a hazard is determined by the amount of vulnerability and the likelihood of that hazard occurring.

Alabama's Top 10 Natural Hazards Alabama's Top 10 technological Hazards
Flooding (high risk, high impact) Energy Crisis (medium risk, medium impact)
Tornadoes/Wind Storms (high risk, high impact) Transportation (air/sea/rail; medium risk, medium impact)
Hurricanes (high risk, high impact) Terrorism (low risk, high impact)
Winter/Ice Storms (high risk, medium impact) Chemical Stockpile (low risk, high impact)
Lightning (high risk, low impact) Radiological Attack (low risk, high impact)
Drought (medium risk, low impact) Radiological Fixed Facility (low risk, medium impact)
Hail (medium risk, low impact) Dam Failure/Breach (low risk, medium impact)
Extreme temperatures (medium risk, low impact) Hazardous Materials Fixed Facility (low risk, medium impact)
Wildfire (low risk, low impact) Cyber-terrorism (low risk, medium impact)
Urban Fire (low risk, low impact) Hazardous Materials Transportation (low risk, low impact)

Talk with your local EMA office to learn which hazards your community is most vulnerable to.

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