Hurricane Katrina was not only the deadliest and most destructive hurricane of 2005, but also can serve as an example of the importance of safety management systems in tourism. Despite numerous warnings of the potential effects of a major storm on New Orleans, the city was not prepared for a hurricane of Katrina’s magnitude. The people of New Orleans suffered terribly from Katrina’s wrath and its tourists were caught in the city with no way to evacuate.

Safety management systems, often known by the abbreviation SMS, are an approach to managing risk and involve developing top-down organizational structures and policies that not only manage risk but also hold people accountable for policies and procedures. Because tourism is a composite industry, different parts of the industry have ...

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