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Emergency Management Decision Making during Severe Weather

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  • 1 University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia
  • | 2 University of Massachusetts—Amherst, Amherst, Massachusetts
  • | 3 University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma
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Abstract

Emergency managers make time-sensitive decisions in order to protect the public from threats including severe weather. Simulation and questionnaires were used to capture the decision-making process of emergency managers during severe weather events. These data were combined with insights from emergency manager instructors, National Weather Service (NWS) forecasters, and experienced emergency managers to develop a descriptive decision-making model of weather information usage, weather assessments, and decisions made during severe weather. This decision-making model can be used to develop better decision support tools, improve training, and to understand how innovative weather information could potentially affect emergency managers’ role of protecting the public.

Corresponding author address: Ellen J. Bass, Dept. of Systems and Information Engineering, University of Virginia, 151 Engineer's Way, Charlottesville, VA 22904. Email: ejb4n@virginia.edu

Abstract

Emergency managers make time-sensitive decisions in order to protect the public from threats including severe weather. Simulation and questionnaires were used to capture the decision-making process of emergency managers during severe weather events. These data were combined with insights from emergency manager instructors, National Weather Service (NWS) forecasters, and experienced emergency managers to develop a descriptive decision-making model of weather information usage, weather assessments, and decisions made during severe weather. This decision-making model can be used to develop better decision support tools, improve training, and to understand how innovative weather information could potentially affect emergency managers’ role of protecting the public.

Corresponding author address: Ellen J. Bass, Dept. of Systems and Information Engineering, University of Virginia, 151 Engineer's Way, Charlottesville, VA 22904. Email: ejb4n@virginia.edu

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