2014 Volume 22 Issue 2 Pages 319-324
Building evacuation analysis has recently received increasing attention, as people are keen to assess the safety of occupants. Reports on past disasters indicate that human behavior characterizes evacuation during emergencies. The understanding and modeling of human behavior enable improved design of evacuation plans to better reflect the needs of occupants — for example, to reduce evacuation time, a composite of pre-movement time and travel time. In this paper, we demonstrate that information at the time of emergencies affects human behavior and that this behavior affects pre-movement time and the time it takes to move people to safe places. Information is shared with people via announcements and through interpersonal communication. We have modeled and simulated information transfer in an agent-based evacuation system, using BDI models that represent the diversity of human psychological states and using ACL-based communications that dynamically change people's beliefs. The model enables an evacuation simulation to consider the effect of information on human behavior and calculate evacuation time, including pre-movement time. The simulation results demonstrate that methods of guidance improve evacuation time, and they reveal phenomena in agent behaviors that have not been simulated by other methods.