Wind speed perception and risk

Agdas, Duzgun, Webster, Gregory D., & Masters, Forrest J. (2012) Wind speed perception and risk. PLoS ONE, 7(11), e49944.

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Abstract

Background How accurately do people perceive extreme wind speeds and how does that perception affect the perceived risk? Prior research on human–wind interaction has focused on comfort levels in urban settings or knock-down thresholds. No systematic experimental research has attempted to assess people's ability to estimate extreme wind speeds and perceptions of their associated risks.

Method We exposed 76 people to 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, and 60 mph (4.5, 8.9, 13.4, 17.9, 22.3, and 26.8 m/s) winds in randomized orders and asked them to estimate wind speed and the corresponding risk they felt.

Results Multilevel modeling showed that people were accurate at lower wind speeds but overestimated wind speeds at higher levels. Wind speed perceptions mediated the direct relationship between actual wind speeds and perceptions of risk (i.e., the greater the perceived wind speed, the greater the perceived risk). The number of tropical cyclones people had experienced moderated the strength of the actual–perceived wind speed relationship; consequently, mediation was stronger for people who had experienced fewer storms.

Conclusion These findings provide a clearer understanding of wind and risk perception, which can aid development of public policy solutions toward communicating the severity and risks associated with natural disasters.

Impact and interest:

5 citations in Scopus
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6 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 69812
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0049944
ISSN: 1932-6203
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > COGNITIVE SCIENCE (170200) > Decision Making (170202)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Civil Engineering & Built Environment
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2012 Agdas et al.
Copyright Statement: This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Deposited On: 17 Apr 2014 04:38
Last Modified: 23 Apr 2014 00:33

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