Publication Detail

Assessing Vulnerability of Transportation Networks for Disaster Response Operations


Research Report

Suggested Citation:
Cantillo, Victor, Luis Macea, Miguel Jaller (2018) Assessing Vulnerability of Transportation Networks for Disaster Response Operations. Networks and Spatial Economics 19 (1), 243 - 273

Transportation networks and systems are vulnerable to natural disasters. During disaster response operations, the degraded functionality of the system can negatively impact the affected population because disrupting relief activitiesincreases human suffering resulting from the lack of access to essential goods or services. Mathematical formulations for assessing transportation network vulnerability do not generally consider this lack of access or deprivation costs, and can lead to inappropriate strategies for humanitarian assistance. This paper proposes a transportation network vulnerability assessment model that allows identifying critical links for the development of high impact disaster response operations. The model is based on an economic analysis that considers the logistical costs of the distribution operations and the external effects derived from the delays in the provision of basic supplies (deprivation costs). The approach is particularly useful for planning resilient disaster response plans in the preparednessstage, prioritizing investment for mitigation and adaptation, and prioritizing the rehabilitation (access restoration) of the disrupted links in the response and recovery stages. In addition to numerical experiments using case study networks, the authors implemented the model to the coffee-producing region of Colombia, which was hit by an earthquake in 1999.

Key words: Vulnerability, deprivation costs, social costs, accessibility, resilience, humanitarian logistics