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Re-Planning the Intermodal Transportation of Emergency Medical Supplies with Updated Transfer Centers

Junhu Ruan (), Felix T. S. Chan () and Xiaofeng Zhao ()
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Junhu Ruan: College of Economics and Management, Northwest A & F University, Yangling 712100, China
Felix T. S. Chan: Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Hong Kong, China
Xiaofeng Zhao: School of Management Engineering and Business, Hebei University of Engineering, Handan 056038, China

Sustainability, 2018, vol. 10, issue 8, 1-20

Abstract: Helicopters and vehicles are often jointly used to transport key relief supplies and respond to disaster situations when supply nodes are far away from demand nodes or the key roads to affected areas are cut off. Emergency transfer centers (ETCs) are often changed due to secondary disasters and further rescue, so the extant intermodal transportation plan of helicopters and vehicles needs to be adjusted accordingly. Disruption management is used to re-plan emergency intermodal transportation with updated ETCs in this study. The basic idea of disruption management is to minimize the negative impact resulting from unexpected events. To measure the impact of updated ETCs on the extant plan, the authors consider three kinds of rescue participators, that is, supply recipients, rescue drivers, and transport schedulers, whose main concerns are supply arrival time, intermodal routes and transportation capacity, respectively. Based on the measurement, the authors develop a recovery model for minimizing the disturbance caused by the updated ETCs and design an improved genetic algorithm to generate solutions for the recovery model. Numerical experiments verify the effectiveness of this model and algorithm and discern that this disruption management method could produce recovery plans with shorter average waiting times, smaller disturbances for all the supply arrival times, intermodal routes and transportation capacity, and shorter running times. The comparison shows the advantage of this disruption management method over the rescheduling method.

Keywords: emergency intermodal transportation; updated transfer centers; disruption management; improved genetic algorithm (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 O13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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