The previous literature indicates that one major problem with the early warning system in Typhoon Haiyan was that local residents did not understand the meaning of the term "storm surge". Furthermore, even though they were aware of the Philippines weather authority (PAGASA) warning, they underestimated the severity of the typhoon and did not evacuate in a timely manner. This study aimed to provide a quantitative analysis of this phenomenon. The authors demonstrated that it cannot be concluded that misunderstanding the term "storm surge" directly led to underestimation and failure to evacuate, although a high level of underestimation among respondents was observed. The fact that those who did not underestimate the severity of the typhoon were more likely to evacuate their houses indicates that accurate warning messages were not "personalized" for local residents.
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