Traffic Flow Models and the Evacuation Problem

Malone, Samuel W.; Miller, Carl A.; Neill, Daniel B.
September 2001
UMAP Journal;Fall2001, Vol. 22 Issue 3, p271
Academic Journal
The article presents a steady-state model for analyzing traffic flow in one and two lanes and addressing vehicle evacuation problem in case of emergencies. The model is based on the assumptions that driver reaction time is around one second, they tend to drive at a safe distance with minimum tailgating, and all cars, headed toward the same direction, are 10 ft long and 5 ft wide. Different terms have been designated for density, occupancy, flow, separation distance, speed, travel time, and total travel time. To determine optimal traffic flow rates, the one-dimensional cellular automata and the steady-state models have been combined to measure the relationship between speed and the separation distance. As for keeping evacuation time to a minimum, the evacuation route must be as safe as possible under the circumstances. The average time a driver takes to reach to safety is related to minimizing total evacuation time but is not equivalent.


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