RALEIGH, NC - Calls will begin Monday to find out how coastal North Carolina residents, like people living on the Outer Banks, feel about evacuating during hurricanes.
During the 15-20 minute survey, residents will be asked about how they get hurricane information, how vulnerable they feel to hurricanes and storm surge and how they would evacuate if told to do so.
“If people don’t understand or believe the risks of staying, they are less likely to evacuate,” said state Emergency Management Director Mike Sprayberry. “As emergency managers, we need to understand those attitudes so we can tell them when and where they need to go and what is the best route.”
A 2002 study showed fewer than one-third of Outer Banks residents evacuated before storms hit.
In 2012, Hurricane Sandy flooded Ocracoke and Highway 12 on Hatteras Island with up to 2 feet of water, closing part of the highway. Early estimates of damage in Dare County reached $13 million.
There have been three named storms in the Atlantic since the season began June 1. The Atlantic hurricane season ends November 30.
Results from the survey are expected by late September and will be turned over to North Carolina emergency management officials to help drive local transportation and sheltering decisions.
The four-week phone survey is being conducted for North Carolina Emergency Management and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Wilmington District.