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Predicting delay in residents' decisions on defending v. evacuating through antecedents of decision avoidance

McNeill, Ilona M., Dunlop, Patrick D., Skinner, Timothy C. and Morrison, David L. (2015). Predicting delay in residents' decisions on defending v. evacuating through antecedents of decision avoidance. International Journal of Wildland Fire,24(2):153-161.

Document type: Journal Article
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IRMA ID 75039815xPUB817
Title Predicting delay in residents' decisions on defending v. evacuating through antecedents of decision avoidance
Author McNeill, Ilona M.
Dunlop, Patrick D.
Skinner, Timothy C.
Morrison, David L.
Journal Name International Journal of Wildland Fire
Publication Date 2015
Volume Number 24
Issue Number 2
ISSN 1049-8001   (check CDU catalogue  open catalogue search in new window)
Scopus ID 2-s2.0-84925279132
Start Page 153
End Page 161
Total Pages 9
Place of Publication Australia
Publisher C S I R O Publishing
Field of Research ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES
170202 - Decision Making
HERDC Category C1 - Journal Article (DIISR)
Abstract In the event of a wildfire, Australian residents of wildfire-prone areas have a choice to defend their home or evacuate early. However, rather than deciding on and preparing for one of these fire-responses ahead of time, most residents delay deciding on defending v. evacuating (e.g. they wait and see instead). Recent research has shown that delaying this decision is associated with reduced levels of preparedness for both responses and on the day of a fire, an increased risk to life and property. The current study empirically examined what predicts this decision delay regarding one’s fire-response by measuring two personality traits and several decision-related factors. A longitudinal survey study of residents of multiple wildfire-prone areas in Western Australia showed that the strongest predictor of delaying their decision to defend v. evacuate was a lack of difference in perceived values of defending v. evacuating. These findings have important implications for the design of interventions to reduce the risks associated with such delay. For one, agencies could utilise residents’ value base to reduce decision delay. Alternatively, they could focus on the formation of proper contingency plans and stress the necessity to prepare well for both defending and evacuating.
Keywords bushfire
community safety
decision making
delay
indecision
natural hazards
procrastination
risk mitigation
survival
wildfire
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/WF12213   (check subscription with CDU E-Gateway service for CDU Staff and Students  check subscription with CDU E-Gateway in new window)
Description for Link Link to published version
URL http://www.publish.csiro.au/wf/pdf/WF12213
 
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Created: Tue, 26 Jul 2016, 13:04:42 CST