Tsunami warning communication and its relationship to evacuation in coastal British Columbia
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This thesis explores the communication of tsunami warning information and its influence on residents’ evacuation behaviour during the January 23, 2018 tsunami warning event in British Colombia. The experiences of residents of the communities of Masset and Ucluelet were examined in a multiple-case study guided by propositions from existing literature in hazard warnings and risk communication. Findings support the importance of pre-event communication and information from peers and the local authority, as well as the connection between the level of risk perception and evacuation behaviour. Receiving a higher number of warning messages was not found to be related to a greater likelihood of evacuation. Masset residents were found to have evacuated less frequently than Ucluelet’s residents, even though Ucluelet suffered more problems with communication efforts that night, suggesting that messaging faults can be mitigated by strong social capital and pre-event communication.