Radio the go-to medium in an emergency

Media Release
2 Feb 2012

A survey conducted to understand the role radio played during the Christchurch earthquakes and the immediate recovery period has revealed radio has the highest importance ranking compared with other media outlets – 77 per cent of respondents ranked radio as very important to them, a clear leader compared to others.

The results show there was reliance on radio across all respondents for it to provide Christchurch residents with up-to-date relevant information with 60 per cent selecting radio as their primary source of information with television 25 per cent.

Bill Francis, Chief Executive of the Radio Broadcasters Association says, ‘part of the role radio played was one of providing information and awareness. It also played a role in providing information about what facilities were available and where to go for emergency supplies’.

The survey also showed that homes holding emergency kits had increased from 48 per cent before the February earthquake to 70 per cent now.

This function was also pivotal in disseminating Civil Defence information with 82 per cent of respondents getting Civil Defence information through the radio and only 16 per cent getting information directly from Civil Defence, either through their web-site or from Civil Defence staff in person or by phone.

Bill Francis says, ‘the radio industry has always had a good understanding of its ability to provide information as well as comfort in these sorts of situations and this significant survey confirms that’.

The survey was conducted by Research International in Christchurch towards the end of 2011 – with 1,076 respondents completing questionnaires.


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