"You should treat all disasters as if they were trivialities but never treat a triviality as if it were a disaster." - Quentin Crisp
A disaster (from Greek meaning, "bad star") is a natural or man-made event that negatively affects life, property or industry often resulting in permanent changes to human societies, ecosystems and the environment. The word's roots imply that when the stars are in a bad position, a disaster is about to happen. The Latin dis and astro, star, creating the Italian disastro, which came in to the English language in the 16th century (OED 1590) through the French desastre.
Expressions containing the word `disaster`:
to end in disaster disaster area disaster operation disaster risk disaster victim environmental disaster, ecological disaster flood disaster natural disaster state of disaster
Now we put new vocabulary into context, so you can see how you might use these terms yourself. The expressions are in boldface in the text.
Much of the state has been declared a disaster area and every county is eligible for federal assistance. Disaster victim identification in southern Thailand took months to complete. The major ecological disaster for nature is man. Death toll in European flood disaster rises. Natural disasters affect the lives of many thousands of people each year. Within minutes they can rip apart a community and change the lives of its residents forever. A state of disaster shall be declared when a disaster has occurred or appears imminent. The capacity of the Red Cross in disaster operation lies, without doubt, in its staff, its professional people, its logistic unit and its volunteers.