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Research Study of Montgomery County homeowners’ responses to wildfire risks

The Montgomery County Fire Marshal and Office of Emergency Management are participating in a study of homeowner perceptions of wildfire risks.
As part of this study, some Montgomery County homeowners may receive mail from Cornerstone Strategies Incorporated, concerning a study of residents’ responses to the risk posed by wildfires. The study, which is also taking place in South Carolina and Washington State, will help fire protection and emergency management planners better understand how local residents intend to respond during a wildfire event. “It’s important that we consult with residents in high-risk wildfire areas so that we have a better understanding of how our citizens view the fire risk,” said Jimmy Williams, Montgomery County Fire Marshal. “This survey is an efficient way to involve many local residents in our efforts to develop public education programs that are both informative and effective.”
Sarah McCaffrey, U.S. Forest Service social scientist who is a co-operator on the research project, along with Ohio State University hopes for a high response rate. “We really want to hear from everyone who receives this survey whether they feel they are knowledgeable or not about the issue of wildfires and how people can prepare for them. The more people who respond, the more accurately this survey will reflect the full range of views.” Approximately 1,500 homeowners have been randomly selected to participate in the survey, which takes about 20 minutes to complete. They will arrive by mail during the month of May. Reminder mailings will be sent to people who do not respond to the first mailing within two weeks.

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