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Author Gregg, Chris E
Title Natural hazards in Hawai'i: Some studies of awareness, risk perceptions and preparedness
book jacket
Descript 269 p
Note Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 66-12, Section: B, page: 6493
Chair: Bruce F. Houghton
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Hawai'i at Manoa, 2005
Lava flows and tsunamis have destroyed communities in Hawai'i and tsunamis have killed hundreds of people. Today, these hazards continue to represent substantial risk to the safety of people and property in Hawai'i. Using social science surveys, this dissertation explored issues of hazard awareness, risk perception, and preparedness for lava flows. Separate surveys focused on understanding of a siren warning system, awareness of natural warning signs of tsunami, and public attitudes toward the use of engineered strategies to mitigate lava flow hazards
Survey findings indicate that a lack of recent eruptions and information tailored to meet the public's needs on a local level have contributed to low levels of threat knowledge, perceived risk and preparedness for lava flows from Mauna Loa and Hualalai volcanoes in the west side of the island of Hawai'i. Analysis of previously unpublished data collected during the 1960 eruption of Kilauea volcano on the same island indicate a high level of support for engineered mitigation to protect the village of Kapoho from lava. Lava diversion strategies are more acceptable among Hawaiian and other ethnic groups if local community members are empowered in the mitigation process
Understanding of the siren warning system was found to be very low on the four main Hawaiian Islands. A capability to recognize natural warning signs of tsunamis and to evacuate immediately is critical to ensure people's safety during locally generated tsunamis. However, descriptions of these signs are inconsistent in the literature. Moreover, in Hilo, island of Hawai'i, people expect and depend on warnings from official sources
Better land-use planning strategies are needed for lava flows and tsunamis to reduce vulnerability in areas of high hazard and encourage sustainable development. However, mitigation and preparedness measures are also needed now to facilitate effective response for people already at risk. Effective outreach messages that recognize that awareness of hazards, perceptions of risk and decisions to adopt protective measures are driven by social-cognitive, cultural, and political factors are needed to meet the needs of specific communities. Outreach should also be monitored to ensure success is not overrated
School code: 0085
Host Item Dissertation Abstracts International 66-12B
Subject Geology
Sociology, Public and Social Welfare
Alt Author University of Hawai'i at Manoa
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