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Journal of Homeland Security and Emergency Management

Editor-in-Chief: Renda-Tanali, Irmak

Managing Editor: McGee, Sibel, Ph.D.

4 Issues per year

IMPACT FACTOR 2013: 0.272
5-year IMPACT FACTOR: 0.489

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR): 0.125
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP): 0.145


Multi-Modal Mass Evacuation in Upstate New York: A Review of Disaster Plans

Daniel Baldwin Hess1 / Julie C Gotham2

1University at Buffalo, State University of New York

2University at Buffalo, State University of New York

Citation Information: Journal of Homeland Security and Emergency Management. Volume 4, Issue 3, ISSN (Online) 1547-7355, DOI: 10.2202/1547-7355.1317, September 2007

Publication History

Published Online:

The devastating aftermath from Hurricane Katrina accentuates the need for localized disaster planning that considers those without access to automobiles—including the poor, elderly, and disabled. Planning for evacuation during extreme events should consider the "carless" by paying special attention to the movement of people to safety using a combination of methods—by foot, public transit, coaches, and vans. Many Upstate New York places are ill prepared for the large-scale evacuation of the carless that may result from an extreme event. The share of households without vehicles in several Upstate cities—Albany (28 percent), Buffalo (31 percent), and Syracuse (27 percent)—surprisingly meets or exceeds the share in New Orleans when Hurricane Katrina struck. This study identifies strengths and weaknesses within upstate written disaster plans in regards to multi-modal evacuation. Findings suggest that many upstate places—except for those near nuclear power plants—have inadequate written plans for mass evacuation, especially when considering the carless population. We recommend future research directions to include wide samples, best practices for carless evacuations, and development of multi-modal evacuation models.

Keywords: disasters; emergencies; evacuation; transportation planning

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