Perceptions of Hurricane Risk Among North Carolina's Coastal Residents : A Case Study of Hurricane Irene
The perception of risk to natural hazards is a very complex topic and there are multiple factors that influence it. However, two factors have generally been overlooked. Through the use of mail-out surveys of residents in Beaufort County and Dare County, North Carolina, this research explores how risk perception varies with location and addresses how changes in the characteristics of a hurricane influence the perception of their risk to hurricanes. Location is addressed using two definitions. The first definition used the physical location of the resident (either Inner Banks or Outer Banks), while the second definition used the anticipated impacts from the hurricane (flooding, storm surge, wind damage). This created three locational factors that were tested for their association with risk perception. Hurricane Irene provides an interesting case study because of the change in track and intensity prior to landfall. Using the Chi Square Test for Association, the results show a significant difference in risk perception with location. Based on location on either the Inner Banks or Outer Banks, risk perception varies with respect to the issued advisories. Based on residing in one of the damage areas, risk perception varies with hazards associated with hurricanes. Results also show that track change and intensity change influence the perception of risk. Based on track change, Inner Banks residents believed they were at greater risk and had increases in their perceptions of personal risk. However, based on intensity change, Outer Banks residents perceived themselves to be at more risk than did Inner Banks residents. Overall, a majority of respondents believed that the track change increased the hazards associated with hurricanes, while the intensity reduction decreased them. While both location and damage area show their own associations with risk perception, combining location with damage area presents a broader picture of how risk perception varies with location.
Pace, William. (January 2013). Perceptions of Hurricane Risk Among North Carolina's Coastal Residents : A Case Study of Hurricane Irene (Master's Thesis, East Carolina University). Retrieved from the Scholarship. (http://hdl.handle.net/10342/4211.)
Pace, William. Perceptions of Hurricane Risk Among North Carolina's Coastal Residents : A Case Study of Hurricane Irene. Master's Thesis. East Carolina University, January 2013. The Scholarship. http://hdl.handle.net/10342/4211. October 09, 2015.
Pace, William, “Perceptions of Hurricane Risk Among North Carolina's Coastal Residents : A Case Study of Hurricane Irene” (Master's Thesis., East Carolina University, January 2013).
Pace, William. Perceptions of Hurricane Risk Among North Carolina's Coastal Residents : A Case Study of Hurricane Irene [Master's Thesis]. Greenville, NC: East Carolina University; January 2013.
East Carolina University