Flood Statistics

floodWater-Related Disasters

Between 1990-2001, 2,200 water-related disasters occurred, floods account for 50% of these disasters.

Water-borne and vector disease outbreaks account for 28%, droughts, 11%, landslide and avalanches, 9% and famine account for 2%.

Most affected areas

Among the continents, Asia is the most affected – 35%, followed closely by Africa – 29%, the Americas – 20%. Europe – 13, and Oceania – 3%.


Floods account for 15% of all deaths related to natural disasters, famines for 42%.

From 1973 to 1997, Approximately 66 million people suffered flood damage.

Between 1987 and 1997, 44% of all flood disasters affected Asia, claiming 228,000 lives (roughly 93% of all flood-related deaths worldwide). Economic losses for the region totaled US$136 billion.

Water-Related Natural Disasters

In 1999, 50,000 deaths were due to natural disasters. This is 10,000 more than the previous year: 40, 000 deaths due to natural disasters in 1998.

In 1999, natural disasters cost a total of US$70 billion. In 1990, the cost ran up to US$30.

Trends in food emergencies

The proportion of food emergencies that are human-induced is rising. In 1981, 58% of food emergencies were due to natural disasters, 15% were human-induced. In 1997, 71% were due to natural disasters, 29% human-induced. In 2001, 61% were induced by natural disasters, compared to 39% human-induced.

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