Modeling and Simulation of Cascading Failures in Transportation Systems during Hurricane Evacuations

Yuan Zhu, Kaan Ozbay, Hong Yang, Fan Zuo, Di Sha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Effective and timely evacuation is critical in alleviating the impact of hurricanes. As such, evacuation models are often sought to support the preparedness of evacuations. One important task in the modeling process is to evaluate exogenous factors that cause transportation system capacity loss during evacuation. Typical factors include direct damage to the roadway network due to storm surge and cascading impacts because of other facilities failures. For example, power outage can lead to signal failure and subway suspension. This paper aims to develop a macroscopic simulation-based approach to study the capacity loss of the roadway network in evacuation due to signal loss as a consequence of power outage. In particular, to simulate the case in which traffic signals lose power, a capacity-reduction model from signalized intersections to unsignalized (all-way stop control) intersections was developed and calibrated using microscopic model created in SUMO and Synchro. We used the downtown Manhattan as a case study area and created a hypothetical power-grid network in terms of neighborhoods. Six scenarios were built to simulate power loss of different neighborhoods. The simulation results give insights on how cascading failures of power network affect roadway network and evacuation process.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number5599073
JournalJournal of Advanced Transportation
StatePublished - 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Automotive Engineering
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Strategy and Management


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