Disaster Management Interview Questions & Answers

  1. Question 1. Can You Predict Earthquakes?

    Answer :

    No. Neither the USGS nor Caltech nor any other scientists have ever predicted a major earthquake. They do not know how, and they do not expect to know how any time in the near future. However based on scientific data, probabilities can be calculated for potential future earthquakes. For example, scientists estimate that over the next 30 years the probability of a major EQ occurring in the San Francisco Bay area is 67% and 60% in Southern California.

  2. Question 2. Can Animals Predict Earthquakes?

    Answer :

    Changes in animal behavior can not be used to predict earthquakes. Even though there have been documented cases of unusual animal behavior prior to earthquakes, a reproducible connection between a specific behavior and the occurrence of an earthquake has not been made. Animals change their behavior for many reasons and given that an earthquake can shake millions of people, it is likely that a few of their pets will, by chance, be acting strangely before an earthquake.

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  4. Question 3. Can You Prevent Large Earthquakes By Making Lots Of Small Ones, Or By “lubricating” The Fault With Water?

    Answer :

    Seismologists have observed that for every magnitude 6 earthquake there are 10 of magnitude 5, 100 of magnitude 4, 1,000 of magnitude 3, and so forth as the events get smaller and smaller. This sounds like a lot of small earthquakes, but there are never enough small ones to eliminate the occasional large event. It would take 32 magnitudes 5’s, 1000 magnitude 4’s, 32,000 magnitude 3’s to equal the energy of one magnitude 6 event. So, even though we always record many more small events than large ones, there are never enough to eliminate the need for the occasional large earthquake.

    As for “lubricating” faults with water or some other substance, injecting high pressure fluids deep into the ground is known to be able to trigger earthquakes to occur sooner than would have been the case without the injection. However, this would be a dangerous pursuit in any populated area, as one might trigger a damaging earthquake.

  5. Question 4. Can Some People Sense That An Earthquake Is About To Happen? (earthquake Sensitive)?

    Answer :

    There is no scientific explanation for the symptoms some people claim to have preceding an earthquake, and more often than not there is no earthquake following the symptoms.

  6. Question 5. Is There Earthquake Weather?

    Answer :

    In the 4th Century B.C., Aristotle proposed that earthquakes were caused by winds trapped in subterranean caves. Small tremors were thought to have been caused by air pushing on the cavern roofs, and large ones by the air breaking the surface. This theory lead to a belief in earthquake weather, that because a large amount of air was trapped underground, the weather would be hot and calm before an earthquake. A later theory stated that earthquakes occurred in calm, cloudy conditions, and were usually preceded by strong winds, fireballs, and meteors.

    However, there is no connection between weather and earthquakes. They are the result of geologic processes within the earth and can happen in any weather and at any time during the year. Earthquakes originate miles underground. Wind, precipitation, temperature, and barometric pressure changes affect only the surface and shallow subsurface of the Earth. Earthquakes are focused at depths well out of the reach of weather, and the forces that cause earthquakes are much larger than the weather forces.

    Earthquakes occur in all types of weather, in all climate zones, in all seasons of the year, and at any time of day. Sometimes, we are asked: “Do earthquakes change the weather in any way? Earthquakes themselves do not cause weather to change. Earthquakes, however, are a part of global tectonics, a process that often changes the elevation of the land and its morphology. Tectonics can cause inland areas to become coastal or vice versa. Changes significant to alter the climate occur over millions of years, however, and after many earthquakes.

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  8. Question 6. Are There More Earthquakes In The Morning/in The Evening/at A Certain Time Of The Month?

    Answer :

    Earthquakes are equally as likely to occur at any time of the day or month or year. The factors that vary between the time of the day, month, or year do not affect the forces in the earth that cause earthquakes.

  9. Question 7. Can The Position Of The Moon Or The Planets Affect Seismicity?

    Answer :

    The moon, sun, and other planets have an influence on the earth in the form of perturbations to the gravitational field. The relative amount of influence is proportional to the objects mass, and inversely proportional to the square of its distance from the earth. No significant correlations have been identified between the rate of earthquake occurrence and the semi-diurnal tides when using large earthquake catalogs. There have, however, been some small but significant correlations reported between the semi-diurnal tides and the rate of occurrence of aftershocks in some volcanic regions, such as Mammoth Lakes.

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  11. Question 8. Can The Ground Open Up During An Earthquake?

    Answer :

    Shallow crevasses can form during earthquake induced landslides, lateral spreads, or other types of ground failures. Faults, however, do not open up during an earthquake. Movement occurs along the plane of a fault, not perpendicular to it. If faults opened up, no earthquake would occur because there would be no friction to lock them together.

  12. Question 9. Why Are We Having So Many Earthquakes? Has Earthquake Activity Been Increasing? Does This Mean A Big One Is Going To Hit? We Haven’t Had Any Earthquakes In A Long Time; Does This Mean That The Pressure Is Building Up And There Will Be A Big One?

    Answer :

    Although it may seem that we are having more earthquakes, earthquakes of magnitude 7.0 or greater have remained fairly constant throughout this century and, according to our records; have actually seemed to decrease in recent years. A partial explanation may lie in the fact that in the last twenty years, we have definitely had an increase in the number of earthquakes we have been able to locate each year. This is because of the tremendous increase in the number of seismograph stations in the world and the many improvements in global communications.

    In 1931, there were about 350 stations operating in the world; today, there are more that 4,000 stations and the data now comes in rapidly from these stations by telex, computer and satellite. This increase in the number of stations and the more timely receipt of data has allowed us and other seismological centers to locate many small earthquakes which were undetected in earlier years, and we are able to locate earthquakes more rapidly. The NEIC now locates about 12,000 to 14,000 earthquakes each year or approximately 35 per day. Also, because of the improvements in communications and the increased interest in natural disasters, the public now learns about more earthquakes.

    According to long-term records (since about 1900), we expect about 18 major earthquakes (7.0 – 7.9) and one great earthquake (8.0 or above) in any given year. However, let us take a look at what has happened in the past 32 years, from 1969 through 2001, so far. Our records show that 1992, and 1995-1997 were the only years that we have reached or exceeded the long-term average number of major earthquakes since 1971. In 1970 and in 1971 we had 20 and 19 major earthquakes, respectively, but in other years, the total was in many cases well below the 18 per year, which we may expect based on the long-term average.

    A temporal increase in earthquake activity does not mean that a large earthquake is about to happen. Similarly, quiescence, or the lack of seismicity, does not mean a large earthquake is going to happen.

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  14. Question 10. Do Earthquakes Cause Volcanoes?

    Answer :

    No, there are different earth processes responsible for volcanoes. Earthquakes may occur in an area before, during, and after a volcanic eruption, but they are the result of the active forces connected with the eruption, and not the cause of volcanic activity.

  15. Question 11. What Is Dengue Fever (df)?

    Answer :

    Dengue infection is caused by a virus. It occurs commonly as dengue fever. Occasionally the patient suffering from dengue may develop bleeding. Common sites for bleeding are nose, gums or skin. Sometimes, the patient may have coffee ground vomiting or black stools. This indicates bleeding in gastro intestinal tracts and it is serious. The patient with dengue who has bleeding has dengue haemorrhagic fever (DHF). Rarely the patient suffering from dengue may develop shock, then it is called dengue shock syndrome (DSS).

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  17. Question 12. When Should I Suspect Dengue?

    Answer :

    Dengue should be suspected when you have sudden onset of fever. The fever is high 103-105 degrees F or 39-40 degrees C. It is accompanied with severe headache (mostly in the forehead), pain behind the eyes, body aches and pains, rash on the skin and nausea or vomiting. The fever lasts for 5-7 days. In some patients, fever comes down on 3rd or 4th day but comes back. All the above symptoms and signs may not be present in the patient. The patient feels much discomfort after the illness.

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  19. Question 13. There Are Several Types Of Fever, When Should Dengue Be Suspected?

    Answer :

    The characteristics of dengue that make it different from other causes of fever are the pain behind the eyes, severe pains in the muscles, severe joint pains, and skin rashes. These features make the diagnosis of suspected Dengue likely. The severe joint pains caused by DF is the reason why DF is also called break-bone fever.

  20. Question 14. What Is The Difference Between Suspected And Probable Case Of Dengue?

    Answer :

    If a patient suspected to be having dengue has reduced platelets or an increase in blood haematocrit, then the patient has probable dengue. These additional findings make dengue more likely. Patients with dengue may not have a high haematocrit if the person was anaemic to start with. 

  21. Question 15. Can You Get Dengue Again After Suffering From It Once?

    Answer :

    It is possible to get dengue more than once. Dengue can occur because of 4 different but related strains of dengue virus. If a person has suffered from one virus, there can be a repeat occurrence of dengue if a different strain is involved subsequently. Being affected by one strain offers no protection against the others. A person could suffer from dengue more than once in her/his lifetime. 

  22. Question 16. Can The Diagnosis Of Dengue Be Confirmed?

    Answer :

    There are laboratory tests that provide direct or indirect evidence for dengue fever. These tests provide evidence for the occurrence of dengue infection. There are some additional tests that can help to identify the type of dengue infection. The tests for confirmation of Dengue should be done in reliable laboratories.

  23. Question 17. How Can Someone Get Dengue Fever?

    Answer :

    Dengue fever occurs following the bite of an infected mosquito Aedes aegypti.This type of mosquito has a peculiar white spotted body and legs and is easy to recognize even by laymen. It breeds in clean water (see Question 20) and has a flight range of only 100 – 200 metres. The mosquito gets the Dengue virus after biting a human being infected with dengue virus. 

  24. Question 18. When Does Dengue Develop After Getting The Infection?

    Answer :

    After the entry of the virus in the person, it multiplies in the lymph glands in the body. The symptoms develop when the virus has multiplied in sufficient numbers to cause the symptoms. This happens generally about 4-6 days (average) after getting infected with the virus. 

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  26. Question 19. Can People Suffer From Dengue And Not Appear Ill?

    Answer :

    Yes, There are many people who are infected with the virus and do not suffer from any signs or symptoms of the disease. For every patient with symptoms and signs there may be 4-5 persons with no symptoms or with very mild symptoms. 

  27. Question 20. Can Dengue Fever Be Treated At Home?

    Answer :

    Most patients with dengue fever can be treated at home. They should take rest, drink plenty of fluids that are available at home and eat nutritious diet. Whenever available, Oral Rehydration Salt/ORS (commoin treating diarrhoea) is preferable. Sufficient fluid intake is very important and becomes more important in case DF progresses into DHF or DSS where loss of body fluid / blood is the most salient feature. It is important to look for danger signs and contact the doctor as soon as any one or more of these are found.

  28. Question 21. What Is The Treatment? Is It Curable?

    Answer :

    Like most viral diseases there is no specific cure for dengue fever. Antibiotics do not help. Paracetamol (can be purchased without prescription) is the drug of choice to bring down fever and joint pain. Other medicines such as Aspirin and Brufen should be avoided since they can increase the risk of bleeding. Doctors should be very careful when prescribing medicines. Any medicines that decrease platelets should be avoided.

  29. Question 22. Can Dengue Fever Become Dangerous?

    Answer :

    The infection can become dangerous since it may cause damage to the blood vessels. The damage may range from increased permeability of the blood vessels, causing leakage of blood fluid/plasma into various organs to completely broken blood vessels that causes bleeding. The symptoms and signs of dengue hemorrhagic fever and dengue shock syndrome are related to damage to the blood vessels and derangement in functioning in components of blood that help it to clot.

  30. Question 23. Can People Die From Dengue Fever?

    Answer :

    People who suffer from dengue fever have no risk of death but some of them develop Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever or Dengue Shock Syndrome. In some of these cases death can occur. With proper treatment, the patients with Dengue hemorrhagic fever and dengue shock syndrome can recover fully. Good treatment provided in time can save most lives.

  31. Question 24. When Should A Patient Suffering From Dengue Go To The Hospital Or Consult A Doctor?

    Answer :

    Generally the progress towards dengue hemorrhagic fever or dengue shock syndrome occur after 3-5 days of fever. At this time, fever has often come down. This may mislead many of us to believe that the patient is heading towards recovery. In fact, this is the most dangerous period that requires high vigilance from care-givers. The signs and symptoms that should be looked for are severe pain in the abdomen, persistent vomiting, bleeding from any site like, bleeding in the skin appearing as small red or purplish spots, nose bleed, bleeding from gums, passage of black stools like coal tar.

    Bring the patient to the hospital whenever the first two signs, namely, severe pain in the abdomen and persistent vomiting are detected. Usually it is too late if we wait until bleeding has occurred. The most dangerous type of dengue is the dengue shock syndrome. It is recognized by signs like excessive thirst, pale and cold skin (due to very low blood pressure), restlessness and a feeling of weakness. 

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  33. Question 25. Is There A Vaccine To Prevent Dengue Fever?

    Answer :

    A vaccine has been developed to prevent dengue fever but it is still under trial. It is not yet available in the market. Scientific progress is likely to help in prevention of dengue fever by vaccination in the years to come. 

  34. Question 26. Are There Any Long Term Ill Effects Of Dengue Fever?

    Answer :

    Most people who suffer from dengue fever recover in 1-2 weeks time. Some may feel tired for several weeks. However, if symptoms persist after this period, consult a doctor.

  35. Question 27. Where Does The Mosquito That Spreads Dengue Live?

    Answer :

    The highly domestic mosquito Aedes aegypti rests indoors, in closets and other dark places. Outside it rests where it is cool and shaded. The female mosquito lays her eggs in water containers in and around the homes, and other dwellings. These eggs will develop, become larvae, and further develop into adults in about 10 days.

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  37. Question 28. How Can The Multiplication Of Mosquitoes Be Reduced?

    Answer :

    Dengue mosquitoes breed in stored, exposed water collections. Favoured places for breeding are barrels, drums, jars, pots, buckets, flower vases, plant saucers, tanks, discarded bottles, tins, tyres, water coolers etc. To prevent the mosquitoes from multiplying, drain out the water from desert coolers/window air coolers (when not in use), tanks, barrels, drums, buckets etc. Remove all objects containing water (e.g. plant saucers etc.) from the house. Collect and destroy discarded containers in which water collects e.g. bottles, plastic bags, tins, used tyres etc. In case it is not possible to drain out various water collections or to fully cover them, use TEMEPHOS, an insecticide, ( brand name Abate1 part per million according to the local guidelines to prevent larvae from developing into adults.

  38. Question 29. How Can I Prevent Mosquito Bites To Prevent Dengue?

    Answer :

    There is no way to tell if a mosquito is carrying the dengue virus. Therefore, people must protect themselves from all mosquito bites. Dengue mosquitoes bite during the day time throughout the day. Highest biting intensity is about 2 hours after sunrise and before sunset.Wear full sleeves clothes and long dresses to cover as much of your body as possible. Use repellents- be careful in using them in young children and old people.

    Use mosquito coils and electric vapour mats during the daytime also to prevent dengue.Use mosquito nets to protect children, old people and others who may rest during the day. The effectiveness of these nets can be improved by treating them with permethrin (pyrethroid insecticide). This bed-net is called Insecticide Treated Nets and are widely used in the prevention of malaria.

  39. Question 30. Is There Any Advice For The Patient With Dengue Fever To Prevent The Spread Of The Disease To Others?

    Answer :

    The spread of dengue from a patient to others is possible. The patient should be protected from contact with the mosquito. This can be achieved by ensuring that the patient sleeps under a bed-net. Effective mosquito repellents are used where the patient is being provided care. This will prevent the mosquito from biting the patient and from getting infected and spreading it to others. 

  40. Question 31. What Is Your Advice On Travel If There Is An Outbreak Of Dengue?

    Answer :

    There is no travel restriction. However, you should be aware of what to do if you are traveling an area where dengue has been reported. This includes observing prevention measures described in these frequently asked questions and answers and reporting to the doctor if you have fever and are worried that it might be dengue fever.

  41. Question 32. What Should The Doctors Treating Dengue Do ?

    Answer :

    Patients suspected to be suffering from dengue haemorrhagic fever or dengue shock syndrome should be admitted to a hospital without delay.The progress of these patients should be monitored regularly at 1-2 hours interval.Platelet counts and haematocrits should be monitored repeatedly to review the progress of patients.If the haematocrit levels fall dangerously then a blood transfusion should be considered.

    A fall of more than 20 % as compared to previous levels may be an indication for transfusion. If the haematocrit values rise the patient should be given fluids intravenously and the fluids carefully monitored to ensure that the patient does not get excess fluids. A rise of more than 20 % as compared to previous levels may be an indication for IV fluids. The doctor should decide based on best judgement of patient’s condition.

  42. Question 33. What Should The Doctors Treating Dengue Avoid?

    Answer :

    Do not prescribe aspirin and brufen or any other medicine that reduces the platelets or increases the tendency to bleed.Avoid giving IV fluids unless the patient is bleeding or the haematocrit level is rising progressively.Avoid rushing into giving blood transfusion unless the haematocrit is falling dangerously. Do not give platelet transfusion unless the platelet count is very low or unless there is bleeding.

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  44. Question 34. What Is Your Advice Regarding Reporting Of Dengue?

    Answer :

    All suspected or probable dengue cases should be reported to the health authorities. Further confirmation of the cases is done by the health authorities. Seek their guidance on blood collection and transportation of samples from suspected/probable cases of dengue.

  45. Question 35. What Can The Community Do To Prevent Dengue?

    Answer :

    In fact, the community is the key to dengue prevention. As elaborated above, prevention of dengue relies heavily on preventing the mosquito (Aedes aegypti) that transmits dengue from breeding inside and in the vicinity of homes. Every household can undertake the very simple measures to prevent existing water collections from becoming places for breeding of A.aegypti by draining out water from various containers, by regular changing of water plus cleaning flower vases and other items or, in the case of unused items, by discarding/destroying them.

    Since the mosquito does not travel far, “house cleaning” by all members of a community will ensure that no breeding places exist, preventing dengue from occurring. The main strategy in the prevention and control of dengue is “source reduction”, or prevention of breeding places, mentioned above.

  46. Question 36. In The Case Of A Dengue Outbreak Or Epidemic What Are Our Strategies?

    Answer :

    Prevention of mosquito breeding places remains our mainstay. However to stop or to slow down the transmission it may be supplemented by “thermal fogging”, using fogging machines. In fogging,we use an insecticide that has an immediate knock-down effect on adult mosquitos. When fogging is undertaken after an epidemic occurs, it is unfortunately too late. Fogging, to be effective, should be done at about 3-4 days interval. It is expensive and time consuming. Therefore, measures undertaken by the community, for the community, to prevent the breeding of mosquitoes is far more cost-effective than containment measures once an outbreak occurs.