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      Hurricane Harvey and Greater Houston households: comparing pre-event preparedness with post-event health effects, event exposures, and recovery.

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          Abstract

          Most disaster studies rely on convenience sampling and 'after-only' designs to assess impacts. This paper, focusing on Hurricane Harvey (2017) and leveraging a pre-/post-event sample of Greater Houston households (n=71) in the United States, establishes baselines for disaster preparedness and home structure flood hazard mitigation, explores household-level ramifications, and examines how preparedness and mitigation relate to health effects, event exposures, and recovery. Between 70 and 80 per cent of participants instituted preparedness measures. Mitigation actions varied: six per cent had interior drainage systems and 83 per cent had elevated indoor heating/cooling components. Sixty per cent reported home damage. One-half highlighted allergies and two-thirds indicated some level of post-traumatic stress (PTS). Three-quarters worried about family members/friends. The results of generalised linear models revealed that greater pre- event mitigation was associated with fewer physical health problems and adverse experiences, lower PTS, and faster recovery. The study design exposed the broad benefits of home structure flood hazard mitigation for households after Harvey.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Disasters
          Disasters
          Wiley
          1467-7717
          0361-3666
          Apr 2020
          : 44
          : 2
          Affiliations
          [1 ] Professor in the Department of Sociology at the University of Utah, United States.
          [2 ] Doctoral Student in the Department of Geography at the University of Utah, United States.
          [3 ] Professor in the Department of Geography at the University of Utah, United States.
          [4 ] Professor of Geography in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at the University of Texas at El Paso, United States.
          Article
          10.1111/disa.12368
          31231850
          e0e6fde6-c56d-4ad0-9cf9-f178546e8d88
          © 2019 The Authors Disasters © 2019 Overseas Development Institute.

          Hurricane Harvey,disaster,flood,health,mitigation,social vulnerability

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