Disasters (English Vocabulary)

ESL Vocabulary for Disasters

The following page has learning games and example sentences using the following 12 words from the "disasters" category:
Studying disaster-related vocabulary is important for emergency preparedness and understanding news reports.

Memory Game

Pairs: getting ready...

Clicks: 0

getting ready...
  • Your mission is to pair pictures with their correct titles in as few a clicks as possible.
  • Click on a card to turn it. Next, try to find its partner by clicking on a second card. (If you fail to find a match with your second click, both cards will turn again.)
  • This is a memory game as well as a vocabulary-learning game.
  • Click on your first card to start. Good luck!
Scoring System

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Example Sentences


blizzard icon

a severe snowstorm characterized by strong winds, low visibility, and heavy snowfall

Easy Examples

  • A blizzard is a very snowy and windy storm.
  • Blizzards make it hard to see and travel.
  • People stay inside during a blizzard.

Harder Examples

  • They prepared for the blizzard by stocking up on food, blankets, and candles.
  • During the blizzard, the roads were closed, and people stayed indoors for safety.
  • He experienced his first blizzard while living in a remote mountain cabin.


drought icon

a prolonged period of abnormally low rainfall, leading to water shortages and dry conditions

Easy Examples

  • A drought is when there's not enough rain for a long time.
  • Droughts can make rivers and lakes dry up.
  • Farmers have trouble growing crops during a drought.

Harder Examples

  • The region faced a severe drought that affected agriculture and water supply.
  • Efforts were made to conserve water during the drought by implementing restrictions.
  • She volunteered to distribute food and water to communities impacted by the drought.


earthquake icon

the sudden shaking or trembling of the Earth's surface caused by tectonic plate movements

Easy Examples

  • An earthquake is when the ground shakes suddenly.
  • Earthquakes can make buildings shake or fall down.
  • People hide under tables during an earthquake.

Harder Examples

  • The earthquake rattled buildings and caused panic among the residents.
  • Earthquake preparedness drills were conducted regularly to ensure safety.
  • He studied seismic activity and its effects as part of his geology research.


flood icon

an overflow of water onto normally dry land, often caused by heavy rainfall, melting snow, or storms

Easy Examples

  • A flood is when water covers land that's usually dry.
  • Floods happen when there's too much rain or a river overflows.
  • Floods can damage houses and roads.

Harder Examples

  • The floodwaters submerged homes and streets, prompting evacuations.
  • Residents worked together to build sandbag barriers to protect against the flood.
  • She donated clothing and supplies to flood victims in the affected area.

forest fire

forest fire icon

a wildfire that spreads rapidly through wooded areas, consuming trees and vegetation

Easy Examples

  • A forest fire is a big fire in the woods.
  • Forest fires can burn trees and animals' homes.
  • Firefighters work hard to stop forest fires.

Harder Examples

  • The forest fire threatened nearby communities, leading to evacuations.
  • Firefighters battled the forest fire day and night to contain its spread.
  • He witnessed the devastating aftermath of a large forest fire while hiking.


hurricane icon

a powerful tropical storm with strong winds and heavy rain, often causing significant damage

Easy Examples

  • A hurricane is a huge storm with strong winds and rain.
  • Hurricanes can break things and cause flooding.
  • People leave their homes when a hurricane comes.

Harder Examples

  • The hurricane's arrival prompted evacuation orders for coastal regions.
  • Meteorologists closely monitored the hurricane's path and intensity.
  • She volunteered with relief organizations to assist hurricane survivors.


mudslide icon

a sudden and rapid flow of mud, debris, and water down a slope or hillside

Easy Examples

  • A mudslide is when wet dirt and rocks slide down a hill.
  • Mudslides happen after heavy rain or earthquakes.
  • Mudslides can be very dangerous.

Harder Examples

  • The heavy rains triggered a mudslide that blocked roads and damaged homes.
  • Residents were urged to evacuate the area due to the risk of a mudslide.
  • He conducted research on soil erosion and factors contributing to mudslides.


sinkhole icon

a depression or hole that forms in the ground, often due to the collapse of underground caverns or erosion

Easy Examples

  • A sinkhole is a hole that suddenly appears in the ground.
  • Sinkholes can happen when the ground underneath collapses.
  • Sinkholes can be surprising and dangerous.

Harder Examples

  • The sinkhole swallowed a portion of the street, causing traffic disruptions.
  • Geologists studied the formation of sinkholes to understand their causes.
  • She marveled at the beauty of a natural sinkhole formation during a hike.


storm icon

a violent disturbance in the atmosphere, often accompanied by strong winds, rain, thunder, and lightning

Easy Examples

  • A storm is bad weather with rain and strong winds.
  • Storms can make things fly around and cause damage.
  • People stay inside during a big storm.

Harder Examples

  • The storm knocked down power lines, leaving many without electricity.
  • Storm warnings prompted sailors to seek shelter in the harbor.
  • He loved watching thunderstorms from the safety of his porch.


tsunami icon

a series of large ocean waves caused by underwater disturbances, such as earthquakes or volcanic eruptions

Easy Examples

  • A tsunami is a giant wave in the ocean.
  • Tsunamis can flood coastal areas and cause a lot of damage.
  • People should go to higher ground if there's a tsunami warning.

Harder Examples

  • The tsunami warning system alerted coastal communities to seek higher ground.
  • Tsunamis can travel across entire ocean basins, causing widespread damage.
  • She studied coastal geography and the impact of tsunamis on ecosystems.

volcanic eruption

volcanic eruption icon

the release of molten lava, ash, and gases from a volcano, often resulting in destruction and ashfall

Easy Examples

  • A volcanic eruption is when a volcano explodes with hot rocks and ash.
  • Volcanic eruptions can be very dangerous and send ash into the sky.
  • People who live near volcanoes need to be careful.

Harder Examples

  • The volcanic eruption forced the evacuation of nearby towns and villages.
  • Volcanologists monitored the volcano's activity to predict eruptions.
  • He visited volcanic sites to witness the aftermath of past eruptions.


avalanche icon

a sudden and rapid flow of snow, ice, and debris down a mountain slope

Easy Examples

  • An avalanche is a bunch of snow sliding down a mountain.
  • Avalanches can happen after a lot of snow falls and makes a slope unstable.
  • Avalanches can be risky for people on mountains.

Harder Examples

  • The avalanche danger was high, leading to the closure of ski resorts.
  • Avalanche safety equipment, such as beacons, was essential for backcountry skiing.
  • She joined a search and rescue team trained to respond to avalanche incidents.
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