Guidance for the model user on representing human behavior in egress models

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Journal titleFire Technology
SubjectEgress model; Performance-based design; Human behavior; Fires; Required safe egress time; Egress; Modeling
AbstractStructures are currently designed and constructed in accordance with prescriptive and performance-based (PBD) methodologies to ensure a certain level of occupant safety during fire emergencies. The performance-based approach requires the quantification of both ASET (Available Safe Egress Time) and RSET (Required Safe Egress Time) to determine the degree of safety provided. This article focuses on the RSET side of the equation, for which a fire protection or fire safety engineer would use some type of egress modelling approach to estimate evacuation performance. Often, simple engineering equations are applied to estimate the RSET value. Over time, more sophisticated computational tools have appeared—that go beyond basic flow calculations; e.g. simulating individual agent movement. Irrespective of the approach adopted, appropriate and accurate representation of human behavior in response to fire within these approaches is limited, mainly due to the lack of a comprehensive conceptual model of evacuee decision-making and behavior during fire emergencies. This article initially presents the set of behavioral statements, or minitheories, currently available from various fire and disaster studies, organized using the overarching theory of decision-making and human behavior in disasters. Once presented, guidance is provided on how these behavioral statements might be incorporated into an evacuation model, in order to better represent human behavior in fire within the safety analysis being performed. The intent here is to improve the accuracy of the results produced by performance-based calculations and analyses.
Publication date
PublisherSpringer Science+Business Media
AffiliationNational Research Council Canada; Construction
Peer reviewedYes
NPARC number23000157
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Record identifier74fe4339-e473-4e0f-abbd-2a95d867c50a
Record created2016-06-14
Record modified2017-04-05
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