The paper pointed out that with global warming, sea level rising and the accelerated urbanization process, the intensity and frequency of natural disasters, and vulnerability of society and economy are growing quickly. Therefore, in order to seek effective disaster prevention and relief measures, natural disasters become hotspots for international society and academy. In Shanghai, one of the major big cities in eastern coastal areas of China, typhoons, rainstorms, storm surges and other natural disasters occur frequently, and often cause serious damages. The characteristics of these disasters are analyzed in detail. Facing the serious situation of risk mitigation and disaster prevention in Shanghai, several countermeasures should be adopted in order to improve Shanghai’s responding ability to natural disasters, which include taking strict precautions against serious natural disasters, developing disaster risk assessment methods and technologies, improving comprehensive disaster relief systems, establishing operational emergency plans, strengthening emergency shelters, relieve the disaster after-effects, promoting volunteer teams for emergency responses and rescues, carrying out disaster prevention publicity and disaster management personnel education.