Excellence in Research and Innovation for Humanity
%0 Journal Article
%A Jill Stephenson and  Marie Vaganay and  Robert Cameron and  Caoimhe McGurk and  Neil Hewitt
%D 2016 
%J  International Journal of Social, Behavioral, Educational, Economic, Business and Industrial Engineering
%B World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology
%I International Science Index 109, 2016
%T The Ongoing Impact of Secondary Stressors on Businesses in Northern Ireland Affected by Flood Events
%U http://waset.org/publications/10003347
%V 109
%X Purpose: The key aim of the research was to identify
the secondary stressors experienced by businesses affected by single
or repeated flooding and to determine to what extent businesses were
affected by these stressors, along with any resulting impact on health.
Additionally the research aimed to establish the likelihood of
businesses being re-exposed to the secondary stressors through
assessing awareness of flood risk, implementation of property
protection measures and level of community resilience. Design/methodology/approach: The chosen research method
involved the distribution of a questionnaire survey to businesses
affected by either single or repeated flood events. The questionnaire
included the Impact of Event Scale (a 15-item self-report measure
which assesses subjective distress caused by traumatic events). Findings: 55 completed questionnaires were returned by flood
impacted businesses. 89% of the businesses had sustained internal
flooding, while 11% had experienced external flooding. The results
established that the key secondary stressors experienced by
businesses, in order of priority, were: flood damage, fear of
reoccurring flooding, prevention of access to the premise/closure,
loss of income, repair works, length of closure and insurance issues.
There was a lack of preparedness for potential future floods and
consequent vulnerability to the emergence of secondary stressors
among flood affected businesses, as flood resistance or flood
resilience measures had only been implemented by 11% and 13%
respectively. In relation to the psychological repercussions, the
Impact of Event scores suggested that potential prevalence of posttraumatic
stress disorder (PTSD) was noted among 8 out of 55
respondents (l5%). Originality/value: The results improve understanding of the
enduring repercussions of flood events on businesses, indicating that
not only residents may be susceptible to the detrimental health
impacts of flood events and single flood events may be just as likely
as reoccurring flooding to contribute to ongoing stress. Lack of
financial resources is a possible explanation for the lack of
implementation of property protection measures among businesses,
despite 49% experiencing flooding on multiple occasions. Therefore
it is recommended that policymakers should consider potential
sources of financial support or grants towards flood defences for
flood impacted businesses. Any form of assistance should be made
available to businesses at the earliest opportunity as there was no
significant association between the time of the last flood event and
the likelihood of experiencing PTSD symptoms.

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