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Personal Preparedness in America Survey


The personal Preparedness in America survey provides a snapshot of current personal preparedness behaviors and perceptions regarding the likelihood of a natural disaster occurring in an individual’s community. It gauges participation in preparedness drills and exercises as well as familiarity with community emergency response plans. Measures understanding of the protective actions to take during two specific types of disasters—earthquakes and tornadoes; and measure awareness of preparedness information and the relationship between respondents recalling that they had received preparedness information and taking preparedness actions.

Federal Emergency Management Agency
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The 2012 FEMA National Survey was fielded from June 2012 to August 2012. The survey was administered using ICF International’s (an applied research and consulting firm contracted to support the survey design, data collection, and analysis and reporting) computer-assisted telephone interviewing system. Spanish-speaking interviewers were provided as an option for Spanish-speaking respondents. As 30 percent of households nationwide are cellular phone only (i.e., have no traditional landline residential phone) or do not have a landline telephone, the 2012 survey methodology used a dual-frame sample, with cellular and landline surveys. Together, the landline and cellular phone samples provided a representative sample of the household population. Findings from the two telephone samples were analyzed for differences; it was determined that minimal differences existed (e.g., the cell phone sample was slightly younger, more frequently male and higher income and the landline sample was slightly older and more likely to be retired).

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The frame excludes adults in penal, mental, or other institutions; adults living in other group quarters such as dormitories, barracks, convents, or boarding houses (with 10 or more unrelated residents); adults living in a household without a telephone; and/or adults who did not speak English or Spanish well enough to be interviewed in either language.

Each telephone number in the national sample had an equal chance of selection. However, operational aspects associated with RDD surveys, such as nonresponse, may produce respondents that over-represent or under-represent certain population segments. Weighting the data according to geography, age, gender, and race/ethnicity accounted for potential biases and adjusted the sample’s demographic distributions to match the distribution in the American Community Survey (ACS) one-year estimates for 2010 population estimates.