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Stated and revealed exit choices of pedestrian crowd evacuees

Milad Haghani and Majid Sarvi

Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, 2017, vol. 95, issue C, 238-259

Abstract: Understanding fundamental behavioural features regulating the escape wayfinding decisions of pedestrian humans in built environments has major implications for the safety planning and the risk-analysis of crowded public facilities. In contrast to the vast interest invested in modelling the momentary responses of evacuees to their immediate surroundings (i.e. the collision-avoidance models), their global navigation behaviour is poorly understood albeit believed to be a major determinant of the accuracy of the crowd simulation models. The primary challenge arises from the scarcity of reliable data suitable for modelling purposes causing the experimental knowledge in the field lagging substantially behind the corresponding model developments. Observations derived from fully natural emergency contexts (in the form of modelling material) are rare and collecting data in realistic experimental settings poses its own major challenges. Only few experimental modelling attempts have been reported thus far in relation with this problem primarily using the stated-choice (SC) methods. Modelling based on revealed choices (RC), however, has remained absent in this context leaving the findings of the SC experiments mostly unverified. It is still unclear whether we can reliably learn from the wayfinding choices made in virtually visualised environments without the decision-makers interacting with real individuals and the physical elements of the environment as they do in the real-world settings. Furthermore, the extent to which the findings of these experiments are specific to the particular characteristics of the environment visualised in the experiments is also unclear.

Keywords: Crowd dynamics; Emergency evacuations; Experimental choice data; Econometric inference; Scaled mixed logit; Latent-class logit (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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Handle: RePEc:eee:transb:v:95:y:2017:i:c:p:238-259