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Disseminating a warning message to evacuate: A simulation study of the behaviour of neighbours

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  • Nagarajan, Magesh
  • Shaw, Duncan
  • Albores, Pavel

Abstract

Large-scale evacuations are a recurring theme on news channels, whether in response to major natural or manmade disasters. The role of warning dissemination is a key part in the success of such large-scale evacuations and its inadequacy in certain cases has been a ‘primary contribution to deaths and injuries’ (Hayden et al., 2007). Along with technology-driven ‘official warning channels’ (e.g. sirens, mass media), the role of unofficial channel (e.g. neighbours, personal contacts, volunteer wardens) has proven to be significant in warning the public of the need to evacuate. Although post-evacuation studies identify the behaviours of evacuees as disseminators of the warning message, there has not been a detailed study that quantifies the effects of such behaviour on the warning message dissemination. This paper develops an Agent-Based Simulation (ABS) model of multiple agents (evacuee households) in a hypothetical community to investigate the impact of behaviour as an unofficial channel on the overall warning dissemination. Parameters studied include the percentage of people who warn their neighbours, the efficiency of different official warning channels, and delay time to warn neighbours. Even with a low proportion of people willing to warn their neighbour, the results showed considerable impact on the overall warning dissemination.

Suggested Citation

  • Nagarajan, Magesh & Shaw, Duncan & Albores, Pavel, 2012. "Disseminating a warning message to evacuate: A simulation study of the behaviour of neighbours," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 220(3), pages 810-819.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ejores:v:220:y:2012:i:3:p:810-819
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ejor.2012.02.026
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Pidd, M. & de Silva, F. N. & Eglese, R. W., 1996. "A simulation model for emergency evacuation," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 90(3), pages 413-419, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Green, Lawrence & Sung, Ming-Chien & Ma, Tiejun & Johnson, Johnnie E. V., 2019. "To what extent can new web-based technology improve forecasts? Assessing the economic value of information derived from Virtual Globes and its rate of diffusion in a financial market," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 278(1), pages 226-239.
    2. Esposito Amideo, A. & Scaparra, M.P. & Kotiadis, K., 2019. "Optimising shelter location and evacuation routing operations: The critical issues," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 279(2), pages 279-295.
    3. Preece, Gary & Shaw, Duncan & Hayashi, Haruo, 2015. "Application of the Viable System Model to analyse communications structures: A case study of disaster response in Japan," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 243(1), pages 312-322.
    4. Busby, J.S., 2019. "The co-evolution of competition and parasitism in the resource-based view: A risk model of product counterfeiting," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 276(1), pages 300-313.
    5. Busby, J.S. & Onggo, B.S.S. & Liu, Y., 2016. "Agent-based computational modelling of social risk responses," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 251(3), pages 1029-1042.

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