Analyzing transportation network performance during emergency evacuations: Evidence from Hurricane Irma

Brian Staes, Nikhil Menon, Robert L. Bertini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


This paper analyzes temporal and spatial traffic patterns and assesses the performance of Florida roadways during the evacuation for Hurricane Irma (2017). Evacuation-specific performance metrics are used to characterize the performance of the roadway systems and granular analyses are conducted using RITIS probe detector data supplemented with hourly continuous counts from Florida Traffic Online. Results from this study show the disparate nature of roadway utilization during mass evacuations – while most interstates remained congested during the major evacuation period, several other highways remained underutilized, potentially due to the lack of information on roadway conditions during evacuation. On the other hand, certain roadways that were typically underutilized suffered from severe congestion and bottlenecking during the evacuation. Detail-oriented studies of this nature could serve as an important baseline to benefit future emergency and disaster planning, and traffic managements during future events of similar nature.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number102841
JournalTransportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment
StatePublished - Jun 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Transportation
  • General Environmental Science


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