San Francisco, so earthquakes. I lived through Loma Prieta in 1989, no damage at all where I was except for being without power for a couple of days. Where I am now suffered no damage from that quake either. I live on a hill made of rock, so the earthquake would have to be mighty big to do anything serious to our place.
I live here because I find it hard to imagine living anywhere else. I love the mild climate. I’d say the real danger is either drought or the water rising so high as to make the city unlivable (I’m looking at you, antarctic glaciers). Even though the water wouldn’t reach my house, I don’t own a boat.
We had almost 3" of snow this year. It was awful, the whole county ground to a halt.
No, really, all the roads got closed and people had to sleep in the local supermarket; even a sprinkling like that is such a rarity that the county owns no snow clearing equipment and due to the hills and no-one having any gear things really were impassable to most cars.
The annual tourist flood is more of an issue, because again, our roads are inadequate.
Oh, flooding, I forgot about flooding. Sacramento is in a very flat, low-lying area, right at the confluence of two rivers. Parts of the city are actually slightly below sea level. There’s a whole system of levies along the Sacramento and American Rivers to protect the city, as well as Folsom Dam upstream where I am, but flooding is a concern if there were to be some major rain event that they can’t handle. I’m at a higher elevation in the suburbs east of the city, so it’s not as much of a concern for me.
In the years I’ve lived in Central Ohio we’ve had a couple of really bad ice storms that knocked out power for close to a week. Tornadoes occur in the region. The New Madrid fault could have another major hiccup and bring on a massive earthquake.
In the Lansing MI area, the worst we can get are ice storms that could knock out power for a few days or snowfalls that can shut down businesses for a day. Tornadoes are exceedingly rare in this part of the state, earthquakes just aren’t a factor, no wildfires, no hurricanes, very rare that it gets to 100F, 90s aren’t all that common. So we’re about as disaster free as one could hope for.
Maryland, about a mile inland from the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay.
There have been a couple of tornadoes nearby in the >20 years we’ve lived here. There was even a mild earthquake. And in 2003, we lost power for 4 days when Hurricane Isabel came through, and we’ve been on the periphery of some other hurricanes.
Oddly enough, the most damage caused by any storm in our immediate area and away from the water (we’re at 90 feet above sea level, flooding isn’t a concern) was from an intense straight-line windstorm back in 2010 or 2011 that was so local, it didn’t even make the news, but my next-door neighbor lost 3 trees, one or two of which fell on her house. We and some friends had been at the local farmer’s market near the beach, and the road back up the hill was covered with live branches that had been ripped off the trees. I remember having to stop every 50-100 feet for a quarter mile or so to get out and move another big-ass branch. Amazingly, no trees fell in our yard.
But nasty storms are the exception; it’s really a quite pleasant place to live. Right now I’m sitting on the back deck, looking south into a solid wall of trees: the area behind our house is a Corps of Engineers-designated protected wetland. We get shade in the summer, and a barely noticeable rise to the west and NW of our house does an amazing job of cutting down on the wind we get, so that it’s very often quite calm in our yard when the winds are brisk just a few hundred yards away. I’ve always felt lucky that we found this house, and we’re staying here until they haul us off to the nursing home.
Yeah, we don’t get flooding or wildfires. I mean, I suppose people who life on a river floodplain do, but if my house has water damage, it will be from the plumbing, not from a natural disaster. And we get too much rain for real fires. Every so often there’s a fire and a building or a couple of adjacent buildings burn down, but it’s not like out west.
Where I live right now, the worst thing that could happen is for a storm to drop a tree on the roof. No earthquakes, hurricanes or other dramatic stuff happens here. No flooding either because I’m on top of a hill.
Having said that, in a few weeks I’m moving to the other side of Australia to the coast of the Pilbara which, being in the part of the world that it is, is prone to cyclones. Gonna be fun times ahead.
I live in Napa Valley. We just had a big ass fire, the only one (so far) in a lifetime of living here. We had a pretty big earthquake a few years ago. We live on a rock, so we only lost a couple tchochkes. (sp?)
The worst thing is the flooding. Every year, thousands of tourists pour into the valley to choke our roads, restaurants and tasting rooms. When the floods recede, the only thing left behind is their money. So, not so bad. Nor a natural disaster.
I think the OP may be exaggerating slightly about how vulnerable we are!
I live in the middle of England.
No earthquakes or hurricanes.
My town is a few hundred feet above sea level (and there’s no large rivers nearby), so no flooding.
No risk of forest fires (we have enough rain.)
If it snows, our local authority clears the roads.
Because if you plan for a disaster, it can have an actual effect?
Growing up in California, we had the aforementioned earthquakes and fires that nobody prepared for. My wife at the time (from Wisconsin) was working for Chevron (who employs some pretty high-end geologists), and they ran everybody through an intensive 2-day disaster preparedness training. That year for Christmas, my wife got everybody in my family an emergency radio and survival packs and everybody thought it was hilarious.
Then Loma Prieta happened…
Living here in Minnesota, all we ever get is winter, which most people seem to be okay with, in spite of the fact that it kills people very year, so it still bears considering. I live here because the work’s here; if I could do it remotely, I’d still be living in Berkeley.
In between, for the year and a half I spent in Dubuque, I thought the boredom just might kill me, but somehow I struggled through.
Coastal Texas(Houston adjacent) here. Hurricanes and tropical storms are possible, but I bought my house with those things in mind. My elevation is significantly(about 5 feet) above the surrounding area for many square miles, even though we’re only a mile from bay waters, which covers most of the flood possibilities. For hurricanes, there is always plenty of notice these days, so I will board-up the house and evacuate if it seems necessary, but the direct hit from hurricane Ike with no real damage lessens that possibility. The famously diluvian Hurricane Harvey dropped forty inches of rain on us in three days with no effect other than sodden yards for a while.
The likelihood of sudden disaster is minimal. No earthquakes, out-of-control brush or forest fires, and tornadoes are extremely rare. The only weather/Act of God things that I worry about are possible hail storms and a hard freeze in the winter. Compared to northern climes where temperatures are routinely below freezing, and often below zero, I find that much, much safer.
I live in the Bay Area. If the Hayward Fault goes right near me I might be in trouble, but my land is pretty solid, and won’t liquify in a quake. Anyhow, due to taxes I can’t afford to sell. No real fire danger where I live. No forests anywhere near.
On the other hand just before I left NJ we were shut down for a week due to massive snow. I wasn’t working then so it was fun. That’s far more disruption than I’ve ever had here. The closest thing to disruption was caused by Enron, not nature.
Northwest Indiana, so natural disasters include tornadoes, blizzards, and floods. I’m not counting earthquakes although we do get them because they’re on the trifling end of such things (although if the New Madrid fault blows we might to be in for a hell of a ride).
The tornadoes are in the EF0 to EF1 range and infrequent - precautions are basically “hide” and my building does have a basement. They’re not the “Mother Nature’s Vacuum From Hell” that are the EF5’s . So I have a plan, my place of work has areas designated as tornado shelters, and you just deal with it.
The blizzards are, again, infrequent but occasionally epic. You stay indoors with your reserve of food and water and emergency lighting and extra blankets until it (literally) blows over. Ditto for the occasional ice storm.
Floods - well, my first residence in this area turned out to be on “high” ground (which means you’re not on top of a noticeable bump in the landscape but it’s still enough of one the water notices). Right now, I’m on the second floor on top of another “bump” so not terribly worried about that, either.
Lake Michigan would have to rise 57 feet before my street becomes beachfront property. I’m pretty sure we’d have ample warning of that occurrence. If something did cause it to rise that much in a hurry I’d say we have worse problems than what happens to all my stuff.
You are moving to LIVE in that area? Holy crap that’s a big change!
I’m in Kobe, Japan. I love the close scenic mountains and beaches (both 1km or less from where I live). I love the amenities – although suburban I have three train lines servicing my area and they come every ten minutes and they get anywhere faster than a car does. I love the food and the cultural activities.
They all keep me here despite the earthquake danger (grave danger), typhoon danger (minimal danger to property, zero danger to life) and sometimes annoying high wind coming down from Mt. Rokko which disturbs my plants. Some other cultural traits might be called natural disasters, and I put up with them too.
I live in central Ohio. There’s not really a lot to outweigh. Every once in a while a little EF0 tornado descends from a thunderstorm, twists some cornstalks or MAYBE knocks over a dilapidated barn, and then people freak out and demand that the city or county waste hundreds of thousands of dollars on more sirens. Sometimes it snows more than usual, or there’s some damage from straight-line winds in a thunderstorm, or the neighborhood that always floods gets flooded again.