The Dong villages are the representative of the cultural landscape of Chinese ethnic minority villages and have been included in the World Heritage Tentative List because of their outstanding universal value. However, because of the compact layout of wooden buildings, Dong villages are highly vulnerable to fire accidents. Since it is difficult for public emergency services to provide timely emergency response to remote mountainous areas where Dong villages are usually located, community disaster coping capacity (CDCC) becomes increasingly important. Thus, from a typical Dong village named Dali in Guizhou, we attempted to identify the features of its CDCC that contribute to the safety of the village. This study investigated the CDCC by looking at three topics: individual disaster coping capacity (IDCC), actual community disaster coping capacity (ACDCC), and potential community disaster coping capacity (PCDCC).
The IDCC was examined based on three factors: risk awareness, disaster preparedness, and potential disaster coping ability. The IDCC of Dali Village represents a predicament between high fire risk awareness and limited countermeasures and deficient potential coping ability. The ACDCC was examined based on three factors: disaster risk reduction planning, community firefighting organization, and fire protection measures. The ACDCC of this village has preliminarily progressed due to the firefighting measures and the establishment of a volunteer firefighting troop. However, due to lack of integrated fire risk reduction planning, the fire protection measures tend to be uncoordinated and some are even ill-considered. The PCDCC was examined based on three factors: basic community property, community connection, and potential coping ability of the community. The PCDCC of this village is characterized by strong community cohesiveness and ample potential responding ability.On the whole, the CDCC of Dali Village tends to be hampered by the lack of integrated planning and community involvement.