Human Response to Hurricane Celia



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Texas A&M University Environmental Quality Program


To clarify some of the problems related to human reaction to natural disaster, a post-hurricane study was made of the attitudes and behavior of selected Corpus Christi, Texas, residents toward Hurricane Celia which struck the Gulf Coast of Texas on August 3, 1970. For several months prior ro the hurricane, a team of researchers from the Environmental Quality Program at Texas A&M University had been engaged in a study of oil-drilling regulation and related attitudes and decision events in Corpus Christi. Recognizing the importance of recording human response to disaster as rapidly as possible after the event to eliminate methodological problems of recall and reconstruction, researchers designed a questionnaire and administered it to groups previously selected for the study referred to above. No attempt was made to develop a random sample of Corpus Christi residents, and no previous study has been conducted which afforded a basis of data comparison. The study was designed to determine (1) attitudes of selected residents toward Celia and hurricanes generally, (2) the effect Celia had on respondents, (3) what action respondents had taken before, during, and after Celia struck, and (4) post-hurricane attitudes toward public and private preventive and relief programs.


50 pages


disaster planning, hurricane Celia, hurricane response