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Communicating Hurricane Risk in Eastern Canada: Enhancing the Communication Lines Between the Canadian Hurricane Centre, Municipalities and Insurers

Image courtesy of NASA

Image courtesy of NASA

  • Headshot

    Mr. Paul Kovacs University of Western Ontario

The project will recommend improvements to communication lines between the CHC and Atlantic Canada municipalities and present a new model of communication between the CHC and insurance companies.

Communication is a crucial aspect of disaster response, both before and during a disaster. The strength of alerting systems is especially important in Atlantic Canada, where municipalities are at risk of being affected by hurricanes and tropical storms.

While modern technologies have made it possible to transmit hurricane warnings with greater precision, issuing alerts and response directives remains a highly challenging task under changing meteorological conditions. In this context, maximizing the response potential of emergency managers by enhancing the quality and efficiency of communication channels becomes crucial.

This project focuses on optimizing pre-disaster communication lines by examining the current communication system between the Canadian Hurricane Centre (CHC) and Atlantic Canada municipalities. The project also evaluates the potential of developing a communication system between the CHC and the Canadian insurance industry. The project aims to ensure a timely and efficient response following hurricanes and develop a stronger climate resiliency for communities in Eastern Canada.

The MEOPAR grant was received in January 2016, and since then, the group has been in touch with two municipalities in Atlantic Canada: Sackville (NB) and Halifax (NS) as well as with representatives from the Canadian Hurricane Centre. The team has designed the interviews for these participants and completed an ethics submission with their University. In mid-2016, the team will fly out to met with the representatives of the Canadian Hurricane Centre as well as emergency managers in Sackville and Halifax, transcribe the interviews and analyze the data collected from them. In addition to the interview design, the material required to communicate with insurance companies has been prepared and ten of them will be recruited to participate in the survey for the Canadian insurance industry over the last three months. The surveys will take place in the second part of this research, as soon as the interviews are complete.

Partners:

  • Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction
  • The Canadian Hurricane Centre

Investigators:

  • Glenn McGillivray Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction
  • Dan Sandink Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction

MEOPeers:

  • Sophie Guilbault

The project will develop a stronger climate resiliency for communities in Eastern Canada. It will recommend improvements to communication lines between the CHC and Atlantic Canada municipalities and present a new model of communication between the CHC and insurance companies.