Case study of Hurricane Katrina

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Perceived Susceptibility to Hurricane
Themes related to perceived susceptibility
could be identified under 2 constructs: confidence
based on experience with previous
hurricane and optimism about the outcome,
and religious faith that attenuated their perception
of their susceptibility to the hurricane’s
adverse impact.
Optimism About Outcome. Typical quotations
on these themes were as follows:
“Course it’s always been that way with us. I
have stayed through many storms, even
through Hurricane Betsy. But the storm
would come through, we have our flood and
get back on track.” Additionally, “If I survived
Hurricane Betsy, I can survive that
one, too. We all ride the hurricanes, you

mandatory evacuation orders and confusing
recommendations from different authorities.
Many mentioned the inconsistent evacuation
recommendations from the mayor and governor.
These factors appeared to have attenuated
residents’ perception of the severity of
the problem and impacted evacuation decisions.
“The mayor did not say it was a mandatory
evacuation at first. One or two days before
the hurricane hit, he said it was mandatory. It
was too late then.”
“They didn’t give us no warning. . . . When
they said leave, it was already too late.”
“After [the] levees broke the mayor said
mandatory evacuation, before then he was
not saying mandatory evacuation.”
“Governor said on TV, you didn’t want to
go, you didn’t have to go, cause it was no
threat to us, she said.”
Perceived Barriers to Action
Financial Barriers to Action. One barrier to
evacuation was financial: being of low socioeconomic
status and having little cash on
hand. This barrier reflected in 2 subareas:…..

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