Dynamic Risk Assessment and Emergency Planning through Transportation of Dangerous Goods by Rail

Transportation of hazardous materials, notably crude oil by rail are increasing in Canada and the USA. Due to the July 2013 Lac Megantic Train Derailment Disaster and increased concerns raised by municipalities across the country, Canadian Government issued a “protective direction” that requires railway companies to share dangerous goods data with municipalities and first responders.

Ali Asgary, Associate Professor, Disaster & Emergency Management at York University in Toronto, Canada is an expert in disaster, emergency, and business continuity management. His extensive research and effective teaching are enhanced by his active contributions to the profession and by translating them into real world practices at different levels. Dr. Asgary selected AnyLogic due to it’s multimethod, agent based and GIS capabilities to analyze and address the situation.

A GIS agent-based model was developed to assist local emergency managers to assess better the risks and develop contingency plans. The intended application of the simulation tool is to facilitate the use of dangerous goods transportation data by municipalities. The model provides a valuable decision tool for local emergency managers to assess dynamically the risks of different categories of dangerous goods transported by rail.

The model answers the question, of what is the risk to the population of the city at any given time and space by a particular train carrying hazardous materials. Dr. Asgary tested the model utilizing the City of Toronto’s rail system, but the model can be quickly adopted for other municipalities.

See the presentation and review the PowerPoint.