Date: May 2009
Creator: Gray-Graves, Amy Michael
Description: The issue of rising number of disasters, the overwhelming increase in number of older adults, and historically flawed evacuations presents real challenges. Disasters can strike anywhere, any time, and have devastating consequences. Since 1900, the number of Americans 65 and older has increased 12 times (from 3.1 million to 36.3 million). During the next two decades, the number of American baby boomers, now aged 45-64, who turn 65, will increase by 40%. As evidenced by recent disasters, the imperfections and vulnerabilities of flawed evacuations for older adults are still present. This study examined the level of willingness to evacuate among older adults in the event of a disaster. Despite the extensive literature on disasters and evacuation, some significant questions regarding evacuation and older adults have not been addressed. This study addressed the following concerns: (1) What is the willingness among older adults to evacuate when asked to do so by emergency management officials? (2) Does the call to evacuate being mandatory versus voluntary influence the willingness of seniors to evacuate? (3) Do preconditions (Gender, Marital Status, Age, Ethnic Origin, and Education Levels) influence the willingness to evacuate among older adults? The sample population consisted of 765 voluntary participants aged 60 ...
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