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Survey of coastal U.S. public's perspective on extra tropical - tropical cyclone storm surge information

by Lazo, Jeffrey K; Morrow, Betty Hearn; National Center for Atmospheric Research (U.S.)Research Applications Laboratory, -- Weather Systems and Assessment Program, -- Societal Impacts Program.
Series: NCAR technical note ; NCAR/TN-496+STR. Publisher: Boulder, Colo. : National Center for Atmospheric Research, 2013ISSN: 2153-2397; 2153-2400.Subject(s): Storm surge | Extratropical and tropical cyclone | Public | Survey | Risk communication | Social scienceOnline resources: Click here to access online Summary: This National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration-funded project aimed to (1) explore and assess the public’s awareness and understanding concerning storm surge and currently available storm surge information; and (2) assess whether the National Weather Service should develop new storm surge informational approaches to improve the communication and decision-making with respect to extratropical and tropical cyclone storm surge risk. A survey of the general public collected data from 900 coastal residents via telephone in the fall of 2010. About one in six indicated that they don’t know whether they live in a surge zone or evacuation area and nearly three out of ten don’t know the elevation of their residence suggesting that a significant portion of the U.S. coastal population is not fully aware of their storm surge vulnerability. When directly asked "In your opinion should the NWS issue a separate surge warning for severe coastal flooding events?" almost 72% answered "Yes." A large number of individuals commented that having a separate surge warning would save lives, increase awareness, and that it would be important for people living nearest the coast to get the additional warning. We conclude that there is significant heterogeneity within and across regions with respect to experience, awareness, and potential responses to severe coastal storms and storm surge threats but strong support for a potential separate storm surge warning product.
Item type Location Call number Copy Status Date due
REPORT REPORT Mesa Lab 03698 (Browse shelf) 1 Available

2013-01

This National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration-funded project aimed to (1) explore and assess the public’s awareness and understanding concerning storm surge and currently available storm surge information; and (2) assess whether the National Weather Service should develop new storm surge informational approaches to improve the communication and decision-making with respect to extratropical and tropical cyclone storm surge risk. A survey of the general public collected data from 900 coastal residents via telephone in the fall of 2010. About one in six indicated that they don’t know whether they live in a surge zone or evacuation area and nearly three out of ten don’t know the elevation of their residence suggesting that a significant portion of the U.S. coastal population is not fully aware of their storm surge vulnerability. When directly asked "In your opinion should the NWS issue a separate surge warning for severe coastal flooding events?" almost 72% answered "Yes." A large number of individuals commented that having a separate surge warning would save lives, increase awareness, and that it would be important for people living nearest the coast to get the additional warning. We conclude that there is significant heterogeneity within and across regions with respect to experience, awareness, and potential responses to severe coastal storms and storm surge threats but strong support for a potential separate storm surge warning product.

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