Survey: Majority of Hoosiers Too Optimistic About When Emergency Aid Would Arrive
By Katlyn Reece
(Undated) – More than half of respondents in a 2013 survey said they believe emergency aid could arrive in less than six hours after a catastrophic event.
In a disaster, emergency responders may actually take up to three days to get to all residents affected by the disaster. Severe weather events such as tornados and earthquakes are considered disasters.
The survey also found that around 20 percent of Hoosiers believe they would receive help within the first hour of a disaster. About 18 percent of respondents think aid would arrive within seven to 24 hours. A less optimistic 17 percent of respondents believe that they would not receive aid for more than 24 hours after a catastrophic event. A pessimistic 14 percent said they did not expect to receive aid at all.
The Indiana Departments of Homeland security said Hoosiers should be prepared to sustain themselves for three days.
“Indiana has some of the best and most dedicated emergency responders anywhere, but faced with a widespread or even statewide emergency, they probably could not meet the expectations of many of our survey respondents,” IDHS Senior Public Information Officer John Erickson said. “We have about six million Hoosiers spread all across the state and emergency responders would react first to the hardest hit, most vulnerable population. That means, in a widespread emergency, it could be several days before some residents see help.”
Erikson said that according to the survey, over half of households in Indiana do not have at least three days’ worth of food and water saved in case of a disaster. More than half of those surveyed also did not have all of the items that should be in a family emergency kit.