Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between Hazard and Danger

Hazard vs Danger

Warning signs are visible everywhere; on the road, in train stations, and in most public places. Two of the very common words that can be found in these warning signs are “danger” and “hazard.” While both refer to a risk or threat, they are two distinct words.

A hazard is a condition that presents a risk or threat to the environment as well as an individual’s life, property, or health. It is something that does not exist but is a possibility that an individual will fall victim to an injury or misfortune. It is an unpredictable and yet unknown experience or occurrence that may result in pain, illness, loss, or injury. Examples of hazards are confined spaces, awkward positions, protruding objects, and the presence of stored electrical, chemical, mechanical, and radioactive energy.

Hazards can be natural such as those posed by volcanoes and tornadoes; man-made such as activities like flying or engaging in extreme sports; or the result of breaking or violating a legal, physical, or moral boundary. A hazard may also be dormant wherein the circumstance still has the potential to be hazardous but still does not affect people, property, or the environment. It can be armed wherein people, property, and the environment are placed in harm’s way. Once a harmful incident has occurred, it is an active hazard and would create an emergency situation.

The term comes from the Old French word “hasard” which means “dice game” which is derived from the Arabic “az-zahr” which means “the gaming die.”

On the other hand, the term “danger” comes from the Middle English word “daunger” which means “power” or “peril” which is derived from the Old French “dangier” from the Latin “dominus” which means “master.” In the English language it came to refer to the power to cause harm. It is a situation where an individual is susceptible to harm or one wherein he is exposed or put at risk. It may or may not be something that is clearly evident or known. A dangerous incident can be serious, but it can also be as mild as the danger of cutting your finger when slicing onions.

“Hazard” is usually used to refer to something that is extremely serious or very damaging. It is used in warning signs to indicate the severity of the situation. It is used to refer to dangers that are bigger and more serious while “danger” is used to generally refer to risky situations whether big or small.


1.A hazard is a condition that presents a threat to an individual, property, or the environment while danger is a situation where an individual is put at risk or is susceptible to a possible hazard.
2.A hazard is usually used to refer to risky situations that are very serious or life-threatening while danger is used in a more general way to refer to risky situations that may cause slight or serious damage.
3.The word “hazard” comes from the Arabic word “az-zahr” while the word “danger” comes from the Latin word “dominus.”

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1 Comment

  1. how and when you are supposed to know the truth about it. well it’s very interesting.

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