Real-time forecasting of travel demand during wildfire evacuations is crucial for emergency managers and transportation planners to make timely and better-informed decisions. However, few studies focus on accurate travel demand forecasting in large-scale emergency evacuations. Therefore, this study develops and tests a new methodological framework for modeling trip generation in wildfire evacuations by using (a) large-scale GPS data generated by mobile devices and (b) state-of-the-art AI technologies. The proposed methodology aims at forecasting evacuation trips and other types of trips. Based on the travel demand inferred from the GPS data, we develop a new deep learning model, i.e., Situational-Aware Multi-Graph Convolutional Recurrent Network (SA-MGCRN), along with a model updating scheme to achieve real-time forecasting of travel demand during wildfire evacuations. The proposed methodological framework is tested in this study for a real-world case study: the 2019 Kincade Fire in Sonoma County, CA. The results show that SA-MGCRN significantly outperforms all the selected state-of-the-art benchmarks in terms of prediction performance. Our finding suggests that the most important model components of SA-MGCRN are evacuation order/warning information, proximity to fire, and population change, which are consistent with behavioral theories and empirical findings.
Enhancing evacuee safety is a key factor in reducing the number of injuries and deaths that result from earthquakes. One way this can be achieved is by training occupants. Virtual Reality (VR) and Serious Games (SGs), represent novel techniques that may overcome the limitations of traditional training approaches. VR and SGs have been examined in the fire emergency context, however, their application to earthquake preparedness has not yet been extensively examined. We provide a theoretical discussion of the advantages and limitations of using VR SGs to investigate how building occupants behave during earthquake evacuations and to train building occupants to cope with such emergencies. We explore key design components for developing a VR SG framework: (a) what features constitute an earthquake event, (b) which building types can be selected and represented within the VR environment, (c) how damage to the building can be determined and represented, (d) how non-player characters (NPC) can be designed, and (e) what level of interaction there can be between NPC and the human participants. We illustrate the above by presenting the Auckland City Hospital, New Zealand as a case study, and propose a possible VR SG training tool to enhance earthquake preparedness in public buildings.
Perivascular Spaces (PVS) are a recently recognised feature of Small Vessel Disease (SVD), also indicating neuroinflammation, and are an important part of the brain's circulation and glymphatic drainage system. Quantitative analysis of PVS on Magnetic Resonance Images (MRI) is important for understanding their relationship with neurological diseases. In this work, we propose a segmentation technique based on the 3D Frangi filtering for extraction of PVS from MRI. Based on prior knowledge from neuroradiological ratings of PVS, we used ordered logit models to optimise Frangi filter parameters in response to the variability in the scanner's parameters and study protocols. We optimized and validated our proposed models on two independent cohorts, a dementia sample (N=20) and patients who previously had mild to moderate stroke (N=48). Results demonstrate the robustness and generalisability of our segmentation method. Segmentation-based PVS burden estimates correlated with neuroradiological assessments (Spearman's $\rho$ = 0.74, p $<$ 0.001), suggesting the great potential of our proposed method