Disaster response is the second phase of the disaster management cycle. It consists of a number of elements, for example; warning/evacuation, search and rescue, providing immediate assistance, assessing damage, continuing assistance and the immediate restoration of infrastructure.The aim of emergency response is to provide immediate assistance to maintain life, improve health and support the morale of the affected population. Such assistance may range from providing specific but limited aid, such as assisting refugees with transport, temporary shelter, and food, to establishing semi-permanent settlement in camps and other locations. It also may involve initial repairs to damaged infrastructure.
The focus in the response phase is on meeting the basic needs of the people until more permanent and sustainable solutions can be found. The main responsibility to address these needs and respond to a disaster lies with the government or governments in whose territory the disaster has occurred. In addition, Humanitarian organizations are often strongly present in this phase of the disaster management cycle, particularly in countries where the government lacks the resources to respond adequately to the needs.