Open Access Open Access  Restricted Access Subscription or Fee Access

Emergency preparedness of veterans and nonveterans

Joseph F. Geiger III, BS


This study examined statistical differences in levels of disaster preparedness between former members of the US Armed Forces (veterans) and civilians (nonveterans). It was hypothesized that veterans would exhibit a higher degree of disaster preparedness as compared to their nonveteran counterparts as a consequence of their training and life experience. Furthermore, if this were proven to be valid, the finding would identify this cohort as an ideal target audience for emergency and disaster preparedness education efforts. A four-page survey consisting principally of closed-ended questions about emergency preparedness was written to measure these differences. Most of the questions required respondents to rank their answers according to a five-step Likert Scale. The survey could be completed either in hard copy or online from September 2014 to January 2015. Ultimately, 113 surveys were returned for evaluation. Of those respondents, 62 were veterans and 51 were nonveterans. The responses were analyzed using one-way analysis of variance tests for statistical significance using the 95 percent confidence standard for each tested value. The results support that veterans are more prepared for domestic emergencies than nonveterans. In addition, veterans were more willing to provide leadership and direction to others in an effort to assist emergency managers in responding to domestic disasters. It is for these reasons that emergency managers should consider targeting veterans for disaster preparedness training to help ensure effective and efficient responses to emergencies.


disasters, veterans, preparedness

Full Text:



Lucus-McEwen V: How 9/11 has transformed emergency management. Emergency Management. September 10, 2011. Accessed June 19, 2014.

Fagel MJ: The role of the emergency manager: Has it changed since 9-11-01? International Association of Emergency Managers. Available at Accessed June 19, 2014.

Homeland Security Act of 2002, Public Law 107-296, US Statutes at large 116: 2163-64, USC 6, §§ 101 et seq (2002).

FEMA: Build A Kit. Available at Accessed April 29, 2015.

Robinson P: Ethics training and development in the military. Parameters. 2007; 37: 23–36.

Burrell L, Adams G, Durand D, et al.: The impact of military lifestyle demands on well-being, army, and family outcomes. Armed Forces Soc. 2006; 33(1): 43-58.

Military Operations: Army Emergency Management Program. Washington, DC: Military Operations, 2012.

Department of the Air Force: Air Force Guidance Memorandum to AFI 10-2501, Air Force Emergency Management Program Planning and Operations. Washington, DC: Department of the Air Force, 2013.

Der-Martirosian C, Strine T, Atia M, et al.: General household preparedness: A comparison between veterans and nonveterans. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2014; 29: 134-140.

Wyte-Lake T, Claver M, Griffin A, et al.: The role of the homebased provider in disaster preparedness of a vulnerable population. Gerontology. 2014; 60(4): 336-345.

Kohn S, Eaton JL, Feroz S, et al.: Personal disaster preparedness: An integrative review of the literature. Disaster Med Public Health Prep. 2012; 6(3): 217-231.

Nacos BL: Mass-Mediated Terrorism: The Central Role of the Media in Terrorism and Counterterrorism. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2002.

Schuster M, Stein B, Jaycox L, et al.: A national survey of stress reactions after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. N Engl J Med. 2001; 345(20): 1507-1512.



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2016 Journal of Emergency Management