Experts believe many in Thailand suffered from "warning fatigue"
Nov 3, 2011
As this monsoon season is being pegged one of the most destructive in Thailand's history, experts are questioning whether or not the 8 million people affected benefited from the time to prepare for all the water, IRIN reports.
According to the source, some are convinced that the extra time people had may have led to uncertainty, mixed messages or "warning fatigue." This can unfortunately complicate how prepared people actually get.
"It's partially denial, it's partially the information, it's partially not knowing what information to believe," Jerry Velasquez, senior regional coordinator for the UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR) told the publication.
Velasquez added that when the Thai government reported heavy rains in early October, some residents built flood walls, while others made only simple changes to their lives, like purchasing extra bottled water. And when flooding warnings started, thousands left the city for higher ground and for other countries, while others ignored the warnings altogether.
"Nobody can say a flood with this amount of water will reach this suburb at 3:47pm and at a height of 1.2m," Douglas Paton, a psychological professor at the University of Tasmania told the source. "Things are much more vague."
Because of this, citizens can get confused on which is the right action to take. For those who decided to stay, many are now suffering from lack of shelter, food security and more, though aid workers are continuing to try and provide support.