FSEG LOGO FIRE SAFETY ENGINEERING GROUP The Queen's Anniversary Prize 2002 The British Computer Society IT Awards 2001 The European IST Prize Winner 2003 The Guardian University Awards Winner 2014
The Faculty of Architecture, Computing & Humanities
UNIVERSITY of GREENWICH










 


GEO-SAFE logo EU logo H2020
GEO-SAFE - Geospatial based Environment for Optimisation Systems Addressing Fire Emergencies (GEO-SAFE)


May 2016 – April 2020
Project reference: 691161
Project Co-Ordination: FSEG University of Greenwich.
Funded by: Marie Skłodowska-Curie Research and Innovation Staff Exchange (RISE)
Project Budget Contribution from the EU: €1,080,000.00

In the EU and Australia, every year thousands of square miles of forests and other regions burn due to wildfires. These fires result in significant economic and ecological losses, and often, human casualties. Both EU and Australian governments are aware of how crucial it is to improve the management and containment of wildfires. Scientists from different specialties, both in EU and Australia, have already developed methods and models in order to improve the management and decision process pertaining to preparedness and response phases in case of bushfire.

The Geospatial based Environment for Optimisation Systems Addressing Fire Emergencies (GEO-SAFE) project, co-ordinated by FSEG of the University of Greenwich, is a four year project (running from May 2016 to April 2020) with 17 partners from 7 countries (United Kingdom, Spain, Italy, France, Switzerland, Netherlands and Australia) with an estimated project cost of €1,386,000.00. The aim of GEO-SAFE is to create a network enabling the two regions to exchange knowledge, ideas and experience, thus boosting the progress of wildfires knowledge and the related development of innovative methods for dealing efficiently with such fires. Major outcomes of this project are implementing solutions and tools in fire suppression, life and goods protection, and implementation and training. The three main fire management domains addressed in GEO-SAFE are: ‘Fire Suppression and Fire propagation control’, ‘Life and Property Protection’ and ‘Implementation and Training’. FSEG’s main role in this project is in the domain of Life protection. The three main breakthroughs to be achieved in this domain are:

  • Computing efficiently good solutions for micro evacuation simulation software is vital for applying them to large open spaces such as found in wild fire applications.
  • Identification and quantification of the human behaviour associated with wildfire evacuation scenarios.
  • Developing specific models dedicated to wildfire constraints and merging both agent-based simulation and OR approaches is a challenging direction of research for handling large-scale evacuation.
 
Work Packages The project brings together the following research organisations and practical wild fire response organisations undertaking research in the following 7 workpackages:

Work Package Duration Leader Participating Partners
WP1-Stochastic Cartography M1 - M48 UTWENTE CEREN, UTWENTE, PCF
WP2-Innovative Models M1 - M47 UCM CEREN, CNRS/LAAS, UCM, PCF, UBP/LIMOS, UTC, UoG-FSEG, RMIT, SDIS2B
WP3-Robustness and Efficiency M1 - M47 UNIVAQ UPD, UBP/LIMOS, CEREN,UNIVAQ, UNIVPR, PCF, UTC
WP4 - Implementation and Training Tools M1 - M47 UoG-eCentre UoG-FSEG, UCM, PCF, EMN, UNIVAQ, UNIVPR, UoG-eCentre, CEREN
WP5 - Innovative Solutions Think-Tank M1 - M48 CEREN All partners
WP6 - Dissemination and Awareness M1 - M48 PCF All partners
WP7 - Project Management M1 - M48 UoG-FSEG All partners


Research Methodology
The research methodology will be based on the joint work of 7 multi-disciplinary research Work Groups each of them meant to bring innovative solutions to wildfire management problems.

Work Group Related WP Leader Participating Partners
WG1 - Stochastic mapping workgroup WP1 UTWENTE and UOM CEREN, PCF
WG2 - Global and alternative models WP2 UCM and RMIT CEREN, CNRS/LAAS, PCF, UBP/LIMOS, UTC
WG3 - Robust processes and dynamic environment WP3 UNIVAQ UPD, UBP/LIMOS, CEREN, UNIVPR, UPD, UBP/LIMOS
WG4 - Efficient Responses WP3 GDR and RMIT UNIVAQ, UNIVPR, PCF, UPD, UBP/LIMOS, UTC
WG5 - Design of the implementation and computational tests WP4 EMN and RMIT UoG-FSEG, UCM, PCF, EMN, UNIVAQ, UNIVPR, UoG-eCentre
WG6 - Agent Based Evacuation Models WP2  UoG-FSEG UoG-FSEG, PCF, RMIT, SDIS 2B
WG7 - Training tools WP4 UoG-eCentre UoG-eCentre, UoG-FSEG, PCF, CEREN


FSEG’s Role in the Project
Current urban scale evacuation models do not generally include pedestrian evacuation, focusing more on vehicular evacuation or coarsely model pedestrians utilising only vehicular routes. Disaster managers require a tool that is capable of simulating pedestrian evacuation of an on-going and evolving event. FSEG’s objectives in the GEO-SAFE project are listed below:

Objective 1.0: Identification of Human Behaviour associated with wildfire evacuation:
  • Objective 1.1: Develop a database of human response to wildfire, based on questionnaire studies involving those who have experienced evacuation from wildfires and those who may need to evacuate from a wildfire situation.
  • Objective 1.2: Identify, quantify and calibrate appropriate behaviours identified in the questionnaire study.
Objective 2.0: Develop a Large Scale Wildfire Evacuation Model
  • Objective 2.1: Identify model requirements through interviews with fire authorities and disaster management organisations.
  • Objective 2.2: Develop and implement these end user requirements within the urbanEXODUS evacuation simulation tool.
  • Objective 2.3: Develop and implement behavioural responses unique to wildfires within the evacuation simulation tool based on data collected through the Human Behaviour study.
  • Objective 2.4: Represent the effect of terrain (paved/unpaved paths) and gradients on the travel speed and behaviour of agents.
  • Objective 2.5: Integrate the evacuation model with fire spread models.
  • Objective 2.6: Represent the interaction of vehicles with pedestrians within the urban evacuation tool.
  • Objective 2.7: Develop a large-scale wildfire evacuation model that can run at faster than real time and thus be utilised during an emergency evacuation incident.
  • Objective 2.8: Calibrate the model to provide the right balance between speed and accuracy of the model to provide reliable results in a timely manner.
Objective 3.0: Embed evacuation simulation environment into a training environment
  • Objective 3.1: Embed urbanEXODUS within the Pandora+ training environment to enable crisis managers to make informed evacuation decisions during the training sessions.
  • Objective 3.2: Integrate the evacuation simulation results within the training environment so crisis managers can formulate appropriate evacuation procedures.
  • Objective 3.3: Enable crisis managers to generate a new scenario on the fly and utilise the results provided at faster than real time to make informed decisions on the most appropriate evacuation procedures to apply.

The work of FSEG will be undertaken in three of the seven work groups:

Work Group 5: Design of the implementation and computational tests
This work group involves benchmarking real/realistic instances (either instances inspired by a past event or simulated ones), testing different processes on these instances and comparing these solutions from different perspectives that include the quality of the solution, the computational time and the flexibility of the system. For such comparison, a key point is the choice of standardized technologies making the different systems compatible and comparable.

FSEG’s role in this work group is to link the urbanEXODUS simulation environment to the PHONEIX fire simulation environment (Phase1), demonstrate the link (Phase2) and demonstrate the integrated urbanEXODUS-Pandora+ prototype at Service Departmental d’Incendie et de Secours HAUTE CORSE, France (Phase 4).
  • Phase 1: Risk assessment solutions implementation:
    (Objective 2.5 )
    WG5 will strongly interact with WG1 to develop and interface of the risk cartography with fire spread simulator (in particular with PHONEIX used in Australia – Victoria) and integrate the risk cartography directly in decision models concerning resource allocations in initial attack and evacuation.
  • Phase 2: Fire fighting solutions:
    (Objective 3.3)
    Here WG5 will strongly interact with WG2 and WG6 to implement a prototype for controlled burning solutions for fuel management with Victoria AUS data and of a coherent procedure of evacuation in wildfires.
  • Phase 4: Simulation environment:
    (Objective 3.3)
    Last direction will be developed in strong link with WG7. It is possible to embed the multi-agent simulation environment into a training environment for first responders and incident managers. Here a prototype for evacuation will be tested at SIS2B.
Work Group 6: Agent Based Evacuation Models
FSEG is the manager of this work group. This work group will explore the application of large-scale multi-agent simulation techniques to evacuation scenarios associated with wildfire evacuation situations. The result will be large-scale evacuation tool that is capable of simulating several interactions of different agents. This will build upon the existing state-of-the-art evacuation simulation software, urbanEXODUS. It is proposed that the EXODUS model can be employed to examine the impact of the wildfire scenario (e.g. the nature, size, location of the fire, fire spread rate, the population distribution and characteristics, their expected response and the routes available) upon the time for the target population to reach safety. This will involve a number of research areas including:
  • Phase 1: Explore the requirements of large-scale evacuations resulting from wildfires (Objective 2.1)
    This will make use of interviews with fire authorities and disaster management organisations that have experience of managing large scale evacuations associated with wildfires.
  • Phase 2: Develop and implement behavioural responses unique to wildfires within the modelling environment (Objectives 1.1, 1.2, 2.3)
    This will require the development of additional behavioural capabilities and data sets to quantify and calibrate the behaviours.
  • Phase 3: Explore the use of alternative techniques in large-scale evacuation scenario’s. (Objectives 2.2, 2.4, 2.6, 2.7, 2.8)
    This will involve investigating the representation of terrain effects, such as change in grade, in the different modelling environments in order to capture the appropriate behaviour of the agents. Large-scale evacuation scenarios will require an ability to simulate the interaction of pedestrians with vehicles and must be able to be executed in reasonable time.

Work Group 7: Training tools
This work group will be focussed around research and innovation activities in the training of planners and operational managers for crisis situations and in particular wildfire situations. The lead partner in this work group, University of Greenwich (Pandora team), will bring a novel and innovative augmented reality-training environment developed from an EU FP7 project, Pandora+, as background to provide an appropriate technology for the management and delivery of a developed training package encompassing the research outputs from the other workgroups.

FSEG’s role in this work group will involve the integration of the training tools with the evacuation simulation tool, urbanEXODUS (Phase 1).
  • Phase 1: Adapting Pandora+ to other environments:
    (Objectives 3.1, 3.2)
    The potential exists to implement the Pandora+ environment training within the lifetime of the project, building in as many of the outputs from the other working groups as possible, dependent on the stability and robustness of those outcomes, within a framework of the existing tools and expertise provided by the Australian partners. The work group will also support similar activities with the end-user European partners, and implementation of the developed training package within the Pandora+ environment.
Evacuation during wild fires must take into consideration pets.
Evacuation during wild fires must take into consideration pets
 
Evacuation by road during the Fort McMurray wild fire
Evacuation by road during the Fort McMurray wild fire
Taken from a dashboard camera of an evacuee evacuating Fort McMurray and heading south on 3rd May 2016
Taken from a dashboard camera of an evacuee evacuating Fort McMurray and heading south on 3rd May 2016
Taken from a dashboard camera of an evacuee evacuating Fort McMurray and heading south on 3rd May 2016
Taken from a dashboard camera of an evacuee evacuating Fort McMurray and heading south on 3rd May 2016
 
 
An area in Bracknell which was affected by a real fire on May 02, 2011 simulated in urbanEXODUS. The fire extent shown here is the simulated fire having a greater extent than the actual fire.
An area in Bracknell which was affected by a real fire on May 02, 2011 simulated in urbanEXODUS. The fire extent shown here is the simulated fire having a greater extent than the actual fire.
A snapshot of the Bracknell area simulation at 30 minutes showing the progress of evacuation while the simulated fire has just started.
A snapshot of the Bracknell area simulation at 30 minutes showing the progress of evacuation while the simulated fire has just started.
A snapshot of the simulation at 1 hour where all people have evacuated and the fire is fast spreading towards the evacuated area.
A snapshot of the simulation at 1 hour where all people have evacuated and the fire is fast spreading towards the evacuated area.


Project Partners
Institution Full Name Short Name Website Logos
Ecole de Management de Normandie EMN http://www.ecole-management-normandie.fr/uk/ EMN logo
Entente pour la Foret Mediterraneenn EFM(CEREN) http://www.entente-valabre.com/ CEREN logo
Fundacio d'Ecologia del Foc i Gestio d'Incendis Pau Costa Alcubierre PCF http://www.paucostafoundation.org PCF logo
Universite Paris-Dauphine UPD http://www.dauphine.fr/en/welcome.html UPD logo
Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology RMIT www.rmit.edu.au RMIT logo
Service Departmental d’Incendie et de Secours de la Haute-Corse SDIS 2B http://www.sdis2b.fr SDIS 2B logo
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique CNRS http://www.cnrs.fr CNRS logo
Universidad Complutense de Madrid UCM http://www.ucm.es UCM logo
Universita degli Studi di Perugia UNIVPR http://www.unipg.it/en/ UNIVPR logo
Universite Blaise Pascal Clermont-Ferrand II UBP http://www.univ-bpclermont.fr/ UBP logo
Universite de Technologie de Compiegne UTC https://www.utc.fr/ UTC logo
Universite de Geneve UNIGE http://www.unige.ch UNIGE logo
University of Greenwich UoG http://fseg.gre.ac.uk/ UoG logo
Universita degli Studi dell'Aquila UNIVAQ http://www.univaq.it/en/ UNIVAQ logo
Universiteit Twente UTWENTE http://www.utwente.nl UTWENTE logo

Further Information Prof. Ed Galea
Fire Safety Engineering Group
University of Greenwich
Greenwich Maritime Campus
Old Royal Naval College
Queen Mary Building
Greenwich SE10 9LS
UK

Tel: +44 (020) 8331 8730
e-mail: E.R.Galea@gre.ac.uk


Consortium web page http://geosafe.lessonsonfire.eu/

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