• 234 pages
  • 5.25 x 8.5
  • 1 figure, 4 halftones
  • Price: $29.95
  • EAN: 9781439918371
  • Publication: Jan 2019
  • Price: $94.50
  • EAN: 9781439918364
  • Publication: Jan 2019
  • Price: $29.95
  • EAN: 9781439918388
  • Publication: Jan 2019

Policing in Natural Disasters

Stress, Resilience, and the Challenges of Emergency Management

Terri M. Adams and Leigh R. Anderson

When natural disasters and emergencies strike, the short- and long-term effects of these events on first responders—the very people society relies upon in the midst of a catastrophe—are often overlooked. Policing in Natural Disasters provides a comprehensive analysis of the major challenges faced by law enforcement officers during extreme crisis events. Terri Adams and Leigh Anderson examine the dilemmas police departments face as well as the impact of the disasters on the professional and personal lives of the officers. Case studies explore the response and recovery phases of emergencies including Hurricane Katrina, the 2010 earthquake and subsequent tsunami in Santiago, Chile, and the Superstorm Tornado Outbreak in 2011.

Policing in Natural Disasters was inspired by the personal accounts of triumph and tragedy shared by first responders. It provides an understanding of first-responder behaviors during disasters, as well as the preparedness, mitigation, response and recovery policy implications for first responders and emergency managers. As first responders must frequently cope with stress, uncertainty, and threats to their health and safety during high-consequence events, Adams and Anderson provide lessons from first-hand experiences of police officers that can lead to better management in times of crisis.


“Responding to critical events is one of the things that the frontline law enforcement officers do best. In the aftermath of most major crises, their selflessness and heroics are praised in popular and social media. The immediate and long-term effect of such response on practitioners receives much less attention. Policing in Natural Disasters provides insight into the unique personal and organizational challenges and dilemmas imposed by catastrophes. It is an important text for those involved in and those who support the public safety community.”
Sheldon F. Greenberg, Professor, Division of Public Safety Leadership in the School of Education at John Hopkins University

“Policing in Natural Disasters addresses critical issues not frequently discussed in disaster management literature. Law enforcement personnel, as core elements of first response similar to fire and EMS, play an important role in dealing with disasters. They also are impacted by catastrophic disasters. This book provides detailed and comprehensive accounts of personal and professional challenges both law enforcement agencies and key personnel face during and in response to catastrophic disasters. Adams and Anderson contribute to law enforcement resilience in the wake of extreme events.
Naim Kapucu, Professor and Director in the School of Public Administration at the University of Central Florida

"Policing in Natural Disasters offers a harrowing view of the hard work that the people who work in this (law-enforcement) profession must endure.... (T)he book offers concrete insights about the challenges that officers face, professionally and personally, in the aftermath of disasters."
— Contemporary Sociology

" (T)he book makes a noteworthy contribution to the literature on policing and resilience.... Adams and Anderson’s work manages to pull back the curtain to reveal the lived experiences of our men and women in uniform; for that reason, it is worthy of a close read."
—Symbolic Interaction

" Adams and Anderson attempt to fill the gap in disaster literature surrounding the question of what 'major challenges law enforcement officers face in such times.'... The book’s greatest strengths are its reminder to both practitioners and scholars of the need in policing for stress management, setting clear performance expectations, and regular ethics training.... The need for both exogenous and indigenous support for officers dealing with the stress and challenges of crisis comes through clearly."
—International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters

About the Author(s)

Terri M. Adams is an Associate Professor of Sociology and Criminology and Deputy Director, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Center for Atmospheric Sciences and Meteorology (NCAS-M) at Howard University.

Leigh R. Anderson is the Chief Performance Analyst in the Public Safety Section of the City of Chicago Office of Inspector General.