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Welcome to the 22nd Annual California GIS Conference. CalGIS 2016 will take place May 10-12 at the Sheraton Park Hotel at the Anaheim Resort.

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Thursday, May 12 • 11:45am - 12:05pm
Comprehensive Tsunami Evacuation modeling to Inform Emergency Management: A Case Study of Balboa Island, California

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The west coast of the United States contains a significant number of population centers at risk from tsunamis, yet many communities lack an understanding of their capacity to evacuate. Modeling to estimate clearance times provides insights into factors that help or hinder successful evacuations, such as limited egress options, high population density, and evacuee mobility. We use the island community of Balboa Island in the City of Newport Beach, California, to examine the interaction of these factors in a study of tsunami evacuation potential. Although various scenarios suggest the island would be completely inundated by tsunami waves, it is unknown whether residents would be able to evacuate before wave arrival and how various mitigation strategies (e.g., contraflow, vertical evacuation, and infrastructural improvements) could reduce clearance times.

A multi-modal evacuation model was developed that allows for exploratory analysis of potential tsunami evacuation scenarios. Components include comprehensive travel demand estimation and agent-based queuing simulation focused on congestion. Modeling provides an understanding of overall evacuation time, or clearance time, for a variety of evacuation scenarios for the study area. Incorporating evacuee response time, background traffic, shadow evacuation, and employee and tourist populations improves the models representation of reality over traditional evacuation models that often underestimate clearance time. Results indicate a wide range of clearance times based on   potential opportunities and constraints to evacuation. Research results can be used to guide local decision makers to implement targeted mitigation strategies that reduce evacuation clearance time.

Kevin Henry, Student Geographer, U.S. Geological Survey Portland, OR

avatar for Kevin Henry

Kevin Henry

Student Contractor, U.S. Geological Survey
Kevin Henry has an interest in developing methods to better define and communicate risk and vulnerability to natural hazards. Current work for the U.S. Geological survey covers a variety of different hazards and methodologies ranging from exposure analysis, to evacuation modeling... Read More →

Thursday May 12, 2016 11:45am - 12:05pm PDT
Palm East