Durham County occupies the area of 299 square miles, while the City of Durham encompasses 94.9 square miles. The Durham City covers about 33% of the Durham County total land. Its physical location is 406 feet above sea level. The climatic conditions of the area are presented in the table below (Schell, 2006):
Natural Hazards are part of our everyday life taking up different form and shapes like tornadoes, floods, earthquakes, hurricanes, wildfires, and winter storms. All these events are natural phenomena, thus, are uncontrollable. However their impact on the area and society are quite destructive. Despite their damaging occurrences these natural hazards are part of the natural system. When this natural system meets the man-made environment, then disasters occur. This happens due to the man-made buildings, agriculture and infrastructure that take the path of the natural forces, and these human buildings are neither indestructible nor are recuperative, hence occurrence of a natural disater debilitates the entire community (Management & Hill, 1998).
Although it is unlikely to prevent a natural hazard but there are some means available that can help in reducing its adverse consequences. Making use of the available tools and techniques can help in avoiding the devstating effects of a hazard in a timely manner. Here the state and the agencies combine together to make efforts and to assist the community with rebuilding efforts. Since the occurrence of a hazard can impact the community in a destructive manner, it is important to have a hazard mitigation plan in place to make recovery easy. Also, by managing the characteristics that cause the occurrence of the hazard, the negative impacts can be mitigated before a hazard occurs. Thus, a hazard mitigation plan is essential, as it can provide a framework to make informed decisions in event of uncertainity and chaos (Natural Hazards Center, 2006).