This research was funded by a grant from the University of Colorado Natural Hazards Center through its Quick Response Grant Program, which is funded by National Science Foundation Grant CMMI1030670. We thank Eva Clark and Valente Benavides, FEMA; Mike Evett, Rainsville Police Department; Paul Brown, Henry County, Alabama, EMA; and Ken Spradlin, U.S. Army Unit 1200 CSSB in Ashland, Alabama. We also thank the anonymous reviewers for their highly insightful and generous comments.
Ashley, W. S., 2007: Spatial and temporal analysis of tornado fatalities in the United States: 1880–2005. Wea. Forecasting, 22, 1214–1228.
Balluz, L., , Schieve L. , , Holmes T. , , Kiezak S. , , and Malilay J. , 2000: Predictors for people's response to a tornado warning: Arkansas, 1 March 1997. Disasters, 24, 71–77.
Becker, J. S., , Paton D. , , Johnston D. M. , , and Ronan K. R. , 2012: A model of household preparedness for earthquakes: How individuals make meaning of earthquake information and how this influences preparedness. Nat. Hazards, 64, 107–137.
Biddle, M. D., 1994: Tornado hazards, coping styles, and modernized warning systems. M.A. thesis, University of Oklahoma Department of Geography, 143 pp.
Blanchard-Boehm, R. D., , and Cook M. J. , 2004: Risk communication and public education in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada on the 10th anniversary of the “Black Friday” tornado. Int. Res. Geogr. Environ. Ed., 13, 38–54.
Brooks, H. E., , and Doswell C. A. III, 2002: Deaths in the 3 May 1999 Oklahoma City tornado from a historical perspective. Wea. Forecasting, 17, 354–361.
Brown, S., , Archer P. , , Kruger K. , , and Mallone S. , 2002: Tornado-related deaths and injuries in Oklahoma due to the 3 May 1999 tornadoes. Wea. Forecasting, 17, 343–353.
Burger, J. M., , and Palmer M. L. , 1992: Changes in and generalizations of unrealistic optimism following experiences with stressful events: Reactions to the 1989 California earthquake. Pers. Soc. Psychol. Bull., 18, 39–43.
Chaney, P. L., , and Weaver G. S. , 2010: The vulnerability of mobile home residents in tornado disasters: The 2008 Super Tuesday tornado in Macon County, Tennessee. Wea. Climate Soc., 2, 190–199.
Cohen, D., , and Nisbett R. E. , 1998: Are there differences in fatalism between rural Southerners and Midwesterners? J. Appl. Soc. Psychol., 28, 2181–2195.
Comstock, R. D., , and Mallonee S. , 2005: Comparing reactions to two severe tornadoes in one Oklahoma community. Disasters, 29, 277–287.
Cutter, S. L., , Barnes L. , , Berry M. , , Burton C. , , Evans E. , , Tate E. , , and Webb J. , 2008: A place-based model for understanding community resilience to natural disasters. Global Environ. Change, 18, 598–606.
Dooley, D., , Catalano R. , , Mishra S. , , and Serxner S. , 1992: Earthquake preparedness: Predictors in a community survey. J. Appl. Soc. Psychol., 22, 451–470.
Dow, K., , and Cutter S. L. , 2000: Public orders and personal opinions: Household strategies for hurricane risk assessment. Environ. Hazards, 2, 143–155.
Duval, T. S., , and Mulilis J. P. , 1999: A person-relative-to-event (PrE) approach to negative threat appeals and earthquake preparedness: A field study. J. Appl. Soc. Psychol., 29, 495–516.
Edwards, M. L., 1993: Social location and self-protective behavior: Implications for earthquake preparedness. Int. J. Mass Emerg. Disasters, 11, 293–304.
Eidson, M., , Lybarger J. A. , , Parsons J. E. , , MacCormack J. N. , , and Freeman J. I. , 1990: Risk factors for tornado injuries. Int. J. Epidemiol., 19, 1051–1056.
Hammer, B., , and Schmidlin T. W. , 2002: Response to warnings during the 3 May 1999 Oklahoma City tornado: Reasons and relative injury rates. Wea. Forecasting, 17, 577–581.
Helweg-Larsen, M., 1999: (The lack of) optimistic biases in response to the 1994 Northridge earthquake: The role of personal experience. Basic Appl. Soc. Psych., 2, 119–129.
Hoekstra, S., , Klockow K. , , Riley R. , , Brotzge J. , , Brooks H. , , and Erickson S. , 2011: A preliminary look at the social perspective of warn on forecast: Preferred tornado warning lead time and the general public's perceptions of weather risks. Wea. Climate Soc., 3, 128–140.
Klein, R. J. T., , Nicholls R. J. , , and Thomalla F. , 2003: Resilience to natural hazards: How useful is this concept? Environ. Hazards, 5 (1–2), 35–45.
Lindell, M. K., , and Hwang S. N. , 2008: Households perceived personal risk and responses in a multihazard environment. Risk Anal., 28, 539–556.
Lindell, M. K., , and Perry R. W. , 2012: The Protective Action Decision Model: Theoretical modifications and additional evidence. Risk Anal., 32, 616–632.
Lindell, M. K., , Sutter D. , , and Trainor J. E. , 2012: White paper 4: Individual and household responses to tornadoes. Proc. Workshop on Weather Ready Nation: Science Imperatives for Severe Thunderstorm Research, Birmingham, AL, NOAA and NSF, A-27.
Liu, S., , Quenemoen L. E. , , Malilay J. , , Noji E. , , Sinks T. , , and Mendlein J. , 1996: Assessment of a severe-weather warning system and disaster preparedness, Calhoun County, Alabama, 1994. Amer. J. Public Health, 86, 87–89.
Mileti, D. S., , and Sorenson J. H. , 1987: Determinants of organizational effectiveness in responding to low probability catastrophic events. Columbia J. World Bus., 22, 92–101.
Mulilis, J. P., , and Duval T. S. , 1995: Negative threat appeals and earthquake preparedness: A person-relative-to-event (PrE) model of coping with threat. J. Appl. Soc. Psychol., 25, 1319–1339.
Mulilis, J. P., , and Duval T. S. , 1997: The PrE model of coping and tornado preparedness moderating effects of responsibility. J. Appl. Soc. Psychol.,27, 1750–1766.
Mulilis, J. P., , Duval T. S. , , and Lippa R. A. , 1990: The effects of a large, destructive local earthquake on earthquake preparedness as assessed by an earthquake preparedness scale. Nat. Hazards, 3, 357–371.
Mulilis, J. P., , Duval T. S. , , and Bovalino K. , 2000: Tornado preparedness of students, nonstudents renters, and nonstudent owners: Issues of PrE theory. J. Appl. Soc. Psychol., 30, 1310–1329.
Mulilis, J. P., , Duval T. S. , , and Rombach D. , 2001: Personal responsibility for tornado preparedness: Commitment or choice? J. Appl. Soc. Psychol.,31, 1659–1688.
Mulilis, J. P., , Duval T. S. , , and Rogers R. , 2003: The effect of a swarm of local tornadoes on tornado preparedness: A quasi-comparable cohort investigation. J. Appl. Soc. Psychol., 33, 1716–1725.
National Weather Service, Huntsville, cited 2012: Dekalb County tornado. [Available online at http://www.srh.noaa.gov/hun/?n=4272011_dekalb_county.]
NCDC, cited 2012: Storm events database: Alabama, 4/27/2011, tornadoes, DeKalb County. [Available online at http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/stormevents/.]
NOAA, 2009: Thunderstorms, tornadoes, lightning: Nature's most violent storms. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Preparedness Guide NOAA/PA 99050, 16 pp.
Phillips, B. D., , and Morrow B. H. , 2007: Social science research needs: Focus on vulnerable populations, forecasting, and warnings. Nat. Hazards Rev., 8, 61–68.
Russell, L. A., , Goltz J. D. , , and Bourque L. B. , 1995: Preparedness and hazard mitigation activities before and after two earthquakes. Environ. Behav., 27, 744–770.
Schmidlin, T. W., , Hammer B. O. , , Ono Y. , , and King P. S. , 2009: Tornado shelter-seeking behavior and tornado shelter options among mobile home residents in the United States. Nat. Hazards, 48, 191–201.
Simmons, K. M., , and Sutter D. , 2008: Tornado warnings, lead times, and tornado casualties: An empirical investigation. Wea. Forecasting, 23, 246–258.
Spittal, M. J., , Siegert R. J. , , McClure J. , , and Walkey F. H. , 2002: The spheres of control scale: The identification of a clear replicable factor structure. Pers. Individ. Differ., 32, 121–131.
Spittal, M. J., , McClure J. , , Siegert R. J. , , and Walkey F. H. , 2005: Optimistic bias in relation to preparedness for earthquakes. Australas. J. Disaster Trauma Stud.,2005-1, 1–10.
Spittal, M. J., , McClure J. , , Siegert R. J. , , and Walkey F. H. , 2008: Predictors of two types of earthquake preparation. Environ. Behav., 40, 798–817.
Storm Prediction Center, cited 2012a: Frequently asked questions about tornadoes: What was the biggest outbreak of tornadoes? [Available online at http://www.spc.noaa.gov/faq/tornado/#History.]
Storm Prediction Center, cited 2012b: Storm reports: Annual U.S. killer tornado statistics, 2011 annual summary [Available online at http://www.spc.noaa.gov/climo/torn/fataltorn.html#2011.]
Tierney, K. J., , Lindell M. K. , , and Perry R. W. , 2001: Facing the Unexpected: Disaster Preparedness and Response in the United States. Joseph Henry Press, 306 pp.
Turner, R. H., , Nigg J. M. , , and Heller-Paz D. , 1986: Waiting for Disaster: Earthquake Watch in California. University of California Press, 446 pp.
U.S. Census Bureau, cited 2012: Population finder: DeKalb County, Alabama, and Rainsville, Alabama, 2010 population estimates. [Available online at http://www.census.gov/popfinder.]