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Risk Perception, Risk-Taking Attitude, and Hypothetical Behavior of Active Volcano Tourists

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To help understand what determines an individual's risk-taking attitude and behavior of tourists visiting a volcano, an interview survey of 523 adults was undertaken in Mt. Aso, an active volcano in Japan where guidance is designed to prohibit visitors with cardio-pulmonary disorders from ascending to the crater. The survey included the individual's knowledge of the prohibition regulation, their risk perception of life-threat to volcanic gas and risk-taking attitude toward the prohibition. Their hypothetical risk-taking behavior assuming their being accompanied by a health risk companion was also investigated. A logistic regression model was used to assess the effects of various factors on the specific risk perception, attitude, and behavior. In a different model, how the risk perception and knowledge would affect attitude and behavior was also assessed. Those having knowledge of the guidance significantly employed a high perception of the risk (OR, 0.45: 95% CI, 0.27–0.73). Those with low risk perception significantly opposed to the current regulation (OR, 2.56:95% CI, 1.63–4.03). However, if subjects possessed health problems, they were more likely to visit the crater when they were asked to do so by their accompanying health risk subjects (2.89:1.28–6.52). Improving the specific risk perception might have beneficial effect on risk-taking attitude and behavior.

Keywords: attitude; hypothetical behavior; risk perception; sulfur dioxide; volcanoes

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Hygiene and Public Health, Teikyo University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan 2: Department of Technology Assessment and Biostatistics, National Institute of Public Health, Saitama, Japan 3: Ministry of the Environment, Department of Natural Environment, Tokyo, Japan

Publication date: 2004-06-01

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