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Emergency preparedness for natural disasters

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Forest fires, floods, storms and landslides are phenomena that we in Sweden normally associate with natural disasters.

From an international perspective the term "natural disasters" covers several types of event.
The UN defines three main groups of natural events that can cause emergencies and disasters: geological, hydro-meteorological and biological. These main groups are in turn divided into sub-levels. Below is the UN recommended division of events, with some adjustments for Swedish conditions.



  • Earthquake
  • Tsunami
  • Volcanic eruption
  • Landslide
  • Soil and rock falls
  • Coastal and waterway erosion
  • Avalanche
  • Debris flow



  • Flooding
  • Storm, cyclone, tornado
  • Extreme precipitation: rain, hail, snow, ice storm
  • Thunderstorm
  • Drought
  • Heat Wave
  • Extreme cold
  • Forest fire
  • Desertification
  • Avalanche
  • Debris flow



  • Epidemic
  • Contagious animal and plant diseases
  • Insect Invasion
  • Attacks by pests

Source: UN / ISDR 2004. Living with Risk, ISBN 92-1-101050-0
Read more about landslides, forest fires, flooding and other types of natural events via the menu.

Additional resources

The MSB can during major incidents assist municipalities with specific additional resources. Around the country there are depots holding equipment for use to deal with floods and forest fires.


Natural Disaster Database

In the database, you can read about experiences and lessons learned from past natural disasters in Sweden.

Published: 2013-06-19 kl. 11:00
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