Survey explores communication during West Virginia water crisis

Elena Savoia, research scientist in the Department of Biostatistics and deputy director of the HSPH Preparedness and Emergency Response Learning Center, was recently interviewed on WOWK-TV in Huntington, West Virginia about crisis communication around the state’s winter 2014 water crisis, in which a chemical spill polluted the Elk River. The spill left up to 300,000 West Virginians in nine counties around the city of Charleston without access to safe drinking water.

Savoia and her team had done a survey in the state asking residents how they learned about the crisis and how they perceived the government’s response to it. The surveys revealed some surprising findings about the role of media in learning about the crisis and West Virginians’ feelings about environmental regulation.

Watch segment 4 of DECISION MAKERS on WOWK-TV