As the number of disasters and crises affecting the tourism industry increases, it is becoming necessary to understand the nature of these disasters and how to manage and limit the impacts of such incidents. This paper defines crises and disasters before discussing the area of crisis and disaster management. The paper then applies the foot and mouth outbreak which occurred in the United Kingdom to the tourism disaster framework proposed by Faulkner (2001). The paper notes that although the outbreak fits the basic principles of Faulkner's (2001) model, the size, scope and subsequent management of the outbreak over an extended period suggests that although the model is useful, it has limited usefulness because not all disasters and crises are the same. Nevertheless, by examining how crises and disasters are managed, lessons for destinations and organisations may help turn such incidents into positive forces for change and help to reduce the severity of future disasters.