Title: Real-time tools for situational awareness and emergency management in transport infrastructures

Authors: Laura Coconea; Uberto Delprato; David Prior; Guido Albertengo; Phil Blythe; Gareth Evans; Dan Brennan

Addresses: SWARCO Mizar, Via Nizza 262, 10126 Turin, Italy ' IES Solutions, Via Vulcano 10, 95030, Gravina di Catania, Italy ' XUVASI Ltd., 145-157 St John Street, London, UK ' Department of Electronics and Telecommunications, Politecnico Di Torino, Corso Duca degli Abruzzi 24, 10129 Torino, Italy ' Transport Operations Research Group, Newcastle University, Cassie Building, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 7RU, UK ' Intu Metrocentre, Management Suite, Gateshead, Tyne & Wear, NE11 9YG, UK ' Transport Operations Research Group, Newcastle University, Cassie Building, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 7RU, UK

Abstract: Critical transport infrastructures such as interchanges, long tunnels and bridges represent the most vulnerable environments within a transportation network; they are characterised by limited access/egress points and high volumes of users in close confines. A number of factors must be addressed to ensure maximum safety of both travellers and emergency service personnel; these include emergency preparedness, timely support for the decision-making process, and planning of optimal interventions in emergency management situations. This paper discusses the integration of wireless sensor networks (WSNs) and virtual reality (VR) to support the self-evacuation of travellers and operational procedures of rescue personnel within these environments, focusing on two key aspects of emergency operations: 1) collecting real-time data; 2) improving the timeliness of first responders through efficient provision of the collected data. Testimonials, technical results and recommendations collated from two pilot installations realised within the EU-funded SAVE ME project demonstrate the qualitative and quantitative impact of such an approach on emergency situation management.

Keywords: wireless sensor networks; WSNs; indoor localisation; virtual reality; roadside applications; evacuation process simulation; real-time data collection; situational awareness; emergency management; transport infrastructures; critical infrastructures; emergency preparedness; decision support; decision making; emergency planning; intervention planning; optimal interventions; self-evacuation; emergency response; rescue personnel; response timeliness; first responders.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMNDI.2014.067191

International Journal of Mobile Network Design and Innovation, 2014 Vol.5 No.4, pp.222 - 237

Available online: 23 Jan 2015 *

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