A National Perspective on Hurricane Evacuation Traffic Operation and Management:

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1 A National Perspective on Hurricane Evacuation Traffic Operation and Management: Policies, Practices, Needs, and Research Brian Wolshon Dept. of Civil and Env.. Engineering LSU HURRICANE CENTER Addressing Hurricanes and Other Hazards and Their Impacts On the Natural, Built and Human Environments

2 Who Are We? LSU HURRICANE CENTER LSU Hurricane Center Multidisciplinary research and teaching program $500k NSF grant to establish the discipline of Hurricane Engineering Research All aspects of hurricane hazards Engineering, Meteorology, Coastal/Environmental, Sociology, Architecture, Planning, etc. Teaching Nation s first academic degree program in Disaster Science and Management Service To learn more about the LSU Hurricane and the new Hurricane Engineering program visit our website:

3 The Need For Innovative Practices LSU HURRICANE CENTER Watershed Events 1998 Hurricane Georges (Louisiana) 1999 Hurricane Floyd (Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina) More involvement from transportation professionals Evacuations are typically planned and managed by emergency managers and law enforcement agencies These agencies do not always have an understanding of traffic operations and design

4 Evacuation Plans and Policies LSU HURRICANE CENTER After the events Hurricanes George ( 98) and Floyd ( 99) a study was undertaken at LSU to identify evacuation plans, practices, and policies from a transportation perspective Among the major findings of the study were the need to: Limit and/or control evacuation demand Maximize the limited capacity of existing transportation infrastructure Improve the acquisition and transfer of data and communication of information Involve transportation professionals to a higher degree in the evacuation process

5 What is Contraflow? LSU HURRICANE CENTER It involves the use of one or more of the lanes (or shoulders) in one direction for the movement of traffic in the other direction Its goal is to increase the capacity of the roadway without incurring the cost of major capital improvements Its sounds easier than it is..

6 Contraflow Plans and Policies LSU HURRICANE CENTER One of the focal points of the LSU study was to identify current contraflow plans, practices, and policies Every state threatened by hurricanes has plans to use it. However, the practices and policies of its use varies from state to state. Including issues associated with: Design, operations, and control Declaration authority, command/control, and enforcement policies Initiation and termination design criteria Use for re-entry

7 State New Jersey Planned Approx. Contraflow Distance Origin Termination (miles) Location Location Route(s) 47/ Atlantic City Expressway 44 72/ /I Dennis Twp Atlantic City Ship Bottom Boro Maurice River Twp Segments Washington Twp Southampton Mantoloking Boro Pt. Pleasant Beach Wall Twp Upper Freehold Maryland MD Ocean City, MD U.S. 50 Virginia I Hampton Roads Bridge Richmond North Carolina I Wilmington Benson (I-95) South Carolina I Charleston Columbia Georgia I Savannah Dublin Florida I-10 Westbound I-10 Eastbound SR 528 (Beeline) I-4 Eastbound I-75 Northbound FL Turnpike I-75 (Alligator Alley) Jacksonville Pensacola SR 520 Tampa Charlotte County Ft. Pierce Coast Tallahassee Tallahassee SR 417 Orange County I-275 Orlando Coast Alabama I Mobile Montgomery Louisiana I-10 Westbound 25 I-55 New Orleans I-10/I-59 (east/north) 115 Hattiesburg, MS Texas I Corpus Christi San Antonio

8 Use Configurations. and their assumed flow rates 3,000 veh/hr 3,900 veh/hr 1a. Normal Operation 1b. Normal Plus One Contraflow Lane 1c. Normal w/shoulder and One Contraflow Lane 1d. Normal Plus Two Contraflow Lanes 4,200 veh/hr 5,000 veh/hr

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10 Initiation & Termination Designs LSU HURRICANE CENTER The location and configuration of initiation points are based on local concerns and existing road network, geography, and terrain. Median cross-over Interchange ramp connections Termination designs also vary. Although, typically, the goal is not to merge the traffic streams. Permanent split Bleed-off and merge Exit normal flow & x-over contraflow Exit contraflow and re-route

11 The New Orleans Contraflow Segment LSU HURRICANE CENTER

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13 New Orleans Evacuation Routes

14 New Orleans Contraflow Westbound I-10/Loyal Drive Interchange Initiation Point Median Crossover

15 Westbound I-10/I-55 Drive Interchange New Orleans Contraflow Termination Point Median Crossover

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17 LSU HURRICANE CENTER Configurations of Other Contraflow Segments

18 SCDOT I-26 I Interchange Ramp Initiation Point

19 Note: 2-way crossover for contraflow re-entry

20 Alabama DOT I-65I Initiation Point Temporary Signs and Barrels DOT personnel on site Variable Message Signs Quantity Summary

21 Alabama DOT I-65I Typical Interchange Off-Ramp Reentry to Contraflow Lanes All On-Ramps open for exiting Flip Down Contraflow Guidance Signs

22 Alabama I-65I Termination Point Normal Traffic is Tapered to a Single Lane Contraflow Traffic is Split

23 NCDOT Emergency I-40 I Initiation Contact List Point Traffic Control Signal Settings Personnel Req mts DMS Messages

24 No Off-Ramp Reentry to Contraflow Lanes Georgia DOT I-16I Typical Interchange (without on-ramp exiting) On and Off-Ramps closed using Type III Barricades

25 No Off-Ramp Reentry to Contraflow LanesWith On-Ramp Exiting On and Off-Ramps Closed Using Water Filled Barricades

26 No On-Ramp Exiting or Off-Ramp Reentry from/to Contraflow Lanes Florida DOT I-4I Typical Interchange

27 Emergency TexDOT I-37 Reversal Contact Lists Plan Instruction List

28 Enforcement Configurations and Personnel Locations

29 TexDOT I-37 Emergency Vehicle Circulation Plan Parallel and frontage roads are used for emergency vehicle circulation I-37 Corpus Christi to San Antonio

30 Current Projects LSU HURRICANE CENTER Development and Distribution of Evacuation Practices Report (FHWA) Contraflow Measurement and Analysis (FHWA) Hurricane Engineering Curriculum and Text Book (National Science Foundation) N.O. Evac Planning, Simulation and ITS (LaDOTD) Combined Traffic Weather Monitoring (La DOTD) Health Impacts of Major Storms (LaBoR, Health Excellence Fund)

31 Combined Traffic-Weather Weather- Flooded Road Monitoring LSU HURRICANE CENTER Sponsored by the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development Goal was to evaluate the feasibility and develop a cost effective pilot system for the (near) real-time acquisition, transfer, and presentation of traffic, weather and road flooding information Give DOTD and EM personnel the ability to monitor current evacuation conditions and have advanced warning of potentially hazardous future conditions

32 TexDOT Visual Traffic Congestion Monitoring

33 Florida DOT Real-Time Flow Monitoring

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35 Approx. Flood Level Tropical Storm Allison (June, 2001)

36 Traffic Data Recording Station

37 USGS Louisiana HydroWatch Data Acquisition Station Antenna Radar Units Rain Gauge Housing for Stream Depth Sensor

38 Real-Time Traffic Volume/Speed

39 Real-Time Weather

40 12 mph 10 mph

41 Contraflow Measurement and Analysis LSU HURRICANE CENTER Sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration Office of Transportation Operations Goal is to field measure characteristics of traffic stream moving under contrflow operation Evacuation (SCDOT or others) Sporting events (LSU football games) Peak hour unbalanced flow (Wash. DC) Evaluate the fundamental characteristics of C/F and use for future modeling

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49 TYPE A TYPE B

50 TYPE C TYPE D

51 TYPE E TYPE F

52 Interstate 10 LSU Campus Traffic Recording Stations

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54

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57 Analysis of New Orleans Evacuation Plans LSU HURRICANE CENTER Sponsored by the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (initiated under La BoR support) Goal is to evaluate evacuation routing strategies for the City of New Orleans (Phase I) Westbound I-10 C/F segment out of the City Effect of phased evacuation Effect of demand management strategies on designated evacuation routes Help State DOTs and EM Agencies to develop or select best strategies for local conditions

58 Analysis of Contraflow Termination Points LSU HURRICANE CENTER Sponsored by the Louisiana Board of Regents Research Competitiveness Subprogram Goal is to evaluate the efficiency of various contraflow segment termination designs and strategies Permanent Split Bleed-off / Merge Exit one or other lane groups Help State DOTs and EM Agencies to develop or select best strategies for local conditions

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60 Hurricane Engineering LSU HURRICANE CENTER Sponsored by the National Science Foundation Goal is to development the nation s first university curriculum in Hurricane Engineering Supports pending LSU academic programs in Disaster Science and Management Develop Hurricane Engineering Textbook Bring attention and give training to engineers in the techniques and practices of Hurricane Engineering similar to Earthquake Engineering and Wind Engineering

61 Related Information LSU HURRICANE CENTER TRB Subcommittee on Emergency Evacuation To research and develop faster, more efficient, and more effective evacuation strategies for natural other and bio/tech hazards Information exchange, Best-Practices documents, identify research needs This information can also be applied for use in more routine conditions and for the management of special event traffic LSU Hurricane Center

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