Unlike most natural hazards such as earthquakes and cyclones which can strike quickly, droughts do not usually have a sudden beginning or end. They are an insidious hazard caused by a period of abnormally dry weather, persisting long enough to produce a serious hydrologic imbalance. We need water for many things including human and animal health, growing plants, producing electricity, washing the dishes and cleaning. And while a drought is unlikely to cause human deaths in most developed countries, a drought in a developing country without adequate access to aid can be devastating.



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