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Published October 27, 2017 | Submitted
Report Open

Responses to Disaster: Planning for a Great Earthquake in California


The principal purpose of this paper is to establish an analytical framework for assisting disaster relief planners in assessing the effectiveness of existing plans and devising realistic allocations of responsibilities among relief organizations, The paper builds on an earlier tradition of disaster studies: while major earthquakes are relatively rare events, major disasters are not, and the patterns of physical and psychological damage to disaster victims have been well documented. The environment in which planning and relief organizations must operate, including the nature and extent of damage an earthquake might cause and the likely behavioral response of both members of relief organizations and the client population, is fairly predictable.

Additional Information

Revised. The research reported in this paper was financed in part by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory out of funds provided by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and in part by the National Science Foundation program of Research Applied to National Needs, grant number APR75-16566. The authors are grateful for the information about existing disaster plans supplied by officials in the California Office of Emergency Services, the County of Los Angeles, Orange County, and the cities of Los Angeles and Long Beach, and for the comments on an earlier draft by Jack Hirshleiffer and Arnold Meltsner.

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