Evacuation dynamics: a modeling and visualization framework
Huertas, Jorge A. and Duque, Daniel and Segura-Durán, Ethel and Akhavan-Tabatabaei, Raha and Medaglia, Andres L. (2019) Evacuation dynamics: a modeling and visualization framework. OR Spectrum . ISSN 0171-6468 (Print) 1436-6304 (Online) Published Online First http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00291-019-00548-x
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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00291-019-00548-x
Evacuation mock drills are critical to emergency preparedness and to stress test the infrastructure capacity. Even though drills are expensive in terms of the involved resources, recognizing critical points of the infrastructure can guide decisions to improve the dynamics during a real evacuation, resulting in saving lives. In this paper, we present a modeling and visualization framework that provides useful insight and information of the evacuation dynamics to the decision makers of complex facilities. Using an optimization-based simulation approach, the framework recreates real evacuation scenarios, provides useful statistics of the evacuation dynamics, and allows for what-if analyses. To do so, our framework solves multiple linear optimization models with an underlying network structure that models the topography and resources of the given facility. A dual analysis of the optimization model allows us to identify critical points during an evacuation. In addition, the framework integrates with geographical information systems to produce rich visualizations of the evacuation dynamics. To illustrate the application of this framework, we evaluate two real evacuation scenarios on a university campus, located in Bogotá (Colombia), and provide insight to improve the decisions taken by the campus administration.
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