Even though Sri Lanka has established Early Warning (EW) mechanisms and Evacuation Procedures (EP) for the communities affected by the coastal disasters, there are several gaps, which hinder effective mechanisms in operation of disaster management practices. These gaps affect both the vulnerable communities and relevant authorities involved in the Disaster Management sector. This paper aims to identify and evaluate those gaps while providing adequate solutions.
For that, questionnaire surveys were carried out with a sample size of 217 via an online survey (117) among the urban level and interviews and telephone interviews (100) with the village level coastal communities. Data analysis was carried out using statistical analysis of questionnaire surveys and grounded theory was used for in-depth qualitative study.
Primary and secondary data obtained from the surveys were categorized under five themes, namely, response to early warning systems, evacuation routes, shelters, drills and training, effect of having a family vehicle, relatives and domestic animals, evacuation of people with special needs and cooperation with local government units. This paper analyses these themes in detail.
While critically evaluating the gaps in existing early warning mechanisms and evacuation procedures, this paper identifies correlations between some of the gaps and recommendations as well. Input from the international academics were also obtained at different forums and have strengthen the findings to overcome the barriers, which hinder successful mechanisms.
This research was conducted in collaboration with the Faculty of Engineering of University of Moratuwa and University of Peradeniya with the financial aid from CABARET (Capacity Building in Asia for Resilience Education), a project of the European Union’s Erasmus + programme – Key action 2 – Capacity building in the field of higher education.
Funding: The research was funded by the EU Erasmus+ CABARET project.
Disclaimer: The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents, which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use, which may be made of the information contained therein.
Perera, C., Jayasooriya, D., Jayasiri, G., Randil, C., Bandara, C., Siriwardana, C., Dissanayake, R., Hippola, S., Sylva, K., Kamalrathne, T. and Kulatunga, A. (2020), "Evaluation of gaps in early warning mechanisms and evacuation procedures for coastal communities in Sri Lanka", International Journal of Disaster Resilience in the Built Environment, Vol. 11 No. 3, pp. 415-433. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJDRBE-07-2019-0048
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