Fourth Symposium on Policy and Socio—Economic Research
Symposium on Urban High Impact Weather
Special Symposium on Measurements in the Urban Environment and Observations
Eighth Conference on Coastal Atmospheric and Oceanic Prediction and Processes
Eighth Symposium on the Urban Environment
23rd Conference on Hydrology
Fourth Conference on the Meteorological Applications of Lightning Data


Weathering the tropical cyclone: Improving public assistance via vulnerability assessment for the older population of New Hanover county, North Carolina

Rachel L. Godwin, University of North Carolina, Charlotte, NC

New Hanover County in southeast North Carolina has a high probability of a tropical cyclone landfall along its coast. Some of the hazards from tropical cyclones include inland flooding and damaging winds. Out of New Hanover County's total population, 13.3% of its residents are 65 years or older. This cohort is especially vulnerable to these hazards because of issues relating to infirmity, poverty, and lack of transportation. Public assistance for the elder population is necessary to protect their property and life. Assistance would include the mitigation of the effects of physical hazards and the facilitation of necessary transportation during evacuations. A geographic information system (GIS) is used to conduct vulnerability assessment analysis and visualize the analytical results. Data are from the 2000 Census, 2006 American Community Survey, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Coastal Service Center, and the NOAA National Hurricane Center (NHC). Results from the analysis conclude that the areas that are highly vulnerable to hazards and have dense 65 and older population are most concentrated in the urbanized areas of the county, and therefore, need more public assistance during the threats of tropical cyclones.

Joint Poster Session 2, Observations/Studies of High—Impact Weather in Urban Regions
Tuesday, 13 January 2009, 9:45 AM-11:00 AM, Hall 5

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