Enhancing Emergency Alerts: HazAdapt Empowers 10x Protective Actions in the Public

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April 4, 2024

Emergency alerts play a crucial role in public safety, aiming to not only capture attention but also prompt action. Despite best efforts, emergency authorities often grapple with uncertainties: Are the provided instructions clear and accessible to everyone, including those with disabilities or those caring for children, the elderly, pets, and livestock? Measuring the real impact of these alerts on community resilience remains a challenge.

Enter HazAdapt, a game-changer in community resilience technology.  This platform enables emergency authorities to enrich alerts with comprehensive preparation, response, and recovery instructions tailored to diverse needs and accessible in multiple languages, even offline. HazAdapt empowers individuals to take charge of their safety, offering a suite of tools designed for inclusivity.

Mike Bamberger, CEM, from Oregon State University Emergency Management, attests to HazAdapt's transformative impact: “HazAdapt helps people help themselves, transforming alerts into comprehensive safety resources.”

The 2024 winter ice storms provided a tangible testament to HazAdapt’s efficacy. Oregon State University Emergency Management’s inclusion of a HazAdapt link in their alerts led to an unprecedented level of public engagement. Within hours of receiving an alert, individuals not only sought out cold weather and power outage information but also engaged with a broader spectrum of hazard preparation activities, demonstrating up to ten times more protective actions—actions aligned with FEMA’s Protective Actions Research.

Key outcomes from the HazAdapt-enhanced alerts included:

  • Direct access to hazard-specific resilience guides through alert links.
  • Comprehensive exploration of HazAdapt’s full hazard guide library.
  • Active participation in HazAdapt’s Prep Checks, often within hours of an alert.
  • Incremental engagement in learning and preparation activities, ranging from emergency kit checks to building support networks.

This case study underscores the power of strategic communication in emergency management. By leveraging HazAdapt, emergency authorities can significantly enhance community resilience and safety—at no cost. HazAdapt’s free app and web tool represent an invaluable resource for both the public and emergency professionals.

Discover more about the proactive steps taken and the insights garnered from the HazAdapt OSU January 2024 Winter Weather Alerts Case Study.