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#215977 - 01/30/11 03:59 PM terms: What's bigger than a very large event?
TeacherRO Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/11/05
Posts: 2396
If a "very large event" ( disaster or emergency) involves thousands; then what term should I use for one affecting a million plus? I'm doing some writing and this has never come up.

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#215978 - 01/30/11 04:11 PM Re: terms: What's bigger than a very large event? [Re: TeacherRO]
dougwalkabout Offline
Crazy Canuck
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/03/07
Posts: 2749
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Off the top of my head:

cataclysm
catastrophe
widespread devastation
mass casualty event
mass destruction
mass displacement

Probably too strong: Armageddon, holocaust

BTW, http://thesaurus.com/ is useful, just don't roll over anything (annoying ads).

See http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/disaster for suggested uses of these synonyms (again, avoid rollover ads).




Edited by dougwalkabout (01/30/11 04:14 PM)

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#215990 - 01/30/11 05:44 PM Re: terms: What's bigger than a very large event? [Re: TeacherRO]
dweste Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 02/16/08
Posts: 2463
Loc: Central California
Perhaps step outside the strictly "size" box:

If confined geographically, perhaps: citywide, countywide, watershed-wide, peninsula-wide, everyone downstream of, everyone downwind of, in the X canyon, etcetera.

If defined by infrastructure failure, perhaps: system-wide, everyone dependent for [resouce] from X utility, beyond X's capability to respond, etcetera.

By comparison to specifically defined governmental unit current census known to or identified for the target audience [city, county, state, country], perhaps: San Franciso level, Sacramento County level, California level, mainland United States level, etcetera.

By comparison to specifically defined historical experience numbers, perhaps: United States polio epidemic, Spanish flu pandemic of 19??, European Black Plague of ????, etcetera.

By referencing animal population threat status terms, perhaps: at-risk, endangered, extinction-level, etcetra.

Numerically, perhaps: literal one-in-ten decimation,

Grammatically, perhaps: "extremely" large event, use of the words like "beyond, exceeding," etcetera.

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#215993 - 01/30/11 06:40 PM Re: terms: What's bigger than a very large event? [Re: TeacherRO]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
I would tend to use geographic area as a descriptor. Terms like: national, regional, statewide come to mind. Simply noting the number of square miles affected, especially when compared to well understood standards, big as the state of Texas or what-have-you, can be quite effective. A few years back we had wildfires in Florida so bad most of a county was evacuated and declared a disaster. That is pretty big.

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#216002 - 01/30/11 08:44 PM Re: terms: What's bigger than a very large event? [Re: TeacherRO]
Am_Fear_Liath_Mor Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 3078
Quote:
What's bigger than a very large event?


Its simply called 'The Event'

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zCnCRj5-bC4

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#216011 - 01/31/11 12:15 AM Re: terms: What's bigger than a very large event? [Re: TeacherRO]
philip Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/19/05
Posts: 639
Loc: San Francisco Bay Area
http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb/edu/docs/terms%20and%20definitions/Terms%20and%20Definitions.pdf

has a list of definitions. For example, a catastropic disaster is one affecting tens or hundreds of thousands of people in an event which overwhelms local, state, and federal resources. I think that would cover a million plus.

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#216018 - 01/31/11 02:28 AM Re: terms: What's bigger than a very large event? [Re: philip]
ZenEngineer Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 09/15/06
Posts: 86
Loc: Northern California
One of my instructors called such events "training opportunities". I'm guessing he would call a really large event a "really good training opportunity".

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#216030 - 01/31/11 07:43 AM Re: terms: What's bigger than a very large event? [Re: TeacherRO]
wildman800 Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/09/06
Posts: 2817
Loc: La-USA
Really large events are termed by the actusl event. Ex: the Challenger Disaster, the Kennedy Assasination, etc.

Fictitious events: Since The Day, Warday, ww III, etc.
_________________________
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#216092 - 01/31/11 08:23 PM Re: terms: What's bigger than a very large event? [Re: TeacherRO]
wildman800 Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/09/06
Posts: 2817
Loc: La-USA
Originally Posted By: TeacherRO
If a "very large event" ( disaster or emergency) involves thousands; then what term should I use for one affecting a million plus? I'm doing some writing and this has never come up.


Would not a "very large EVENT" be one that changes normal everyday life onto a new direction from that point forward. AKA: The End of The World As We Know (TEOTWAWKI).
_________________________
QMC, USCG (Ret)
The best luck is what you make yourself!

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#216100 - 01/31/11 10:38 PM Re: terms: What's bigger than a very large event? [Re: wildman800]
bacpacjac Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/05/07
Posts: 3601
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: wildman800

Would not a "very large EVENT" be one that changes normal everyday life onto a new direction from that point forward. AKA: The End of The World As We Know (TEOTWAWKI).


I have to respectfully disagree. TEOTWAWKI is way too generic and stereotypically doomy and gloomy. Except for a limited audience, you'd feed into fears, or open yourself up to accusations of fear mongoring or ridicule. Lots of the people with brighter minds than me around here have come up with some great suggestions. i'd pick one of those.
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