Households’ evacuation decision in response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita

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A household’s evacuation decision is determined most directly by expected wind impacts. Expected hydrological impacts did not have as much of an impact on evacuation decisions as wind impacts. Official warnings and risk area also had direct effect on the decision to evacuate.

This statistical meta-analysis aimed to investigate why some people evacuate but others do not in the context of hurricane emergencies. Homeownership, official warning, risk area, seeing peers evacuating, expected hydrological impacts, and expected wind impacts were factors with strong and consistent effects on the decision to evacuate. Presence of children in the home, being female, being black, relying on news media for storm information, relying on peers for storm information, and hurricane intensity are factors that have weaker effects. This could be due to a mediation through psychological variables.

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