The Development of an Advanced Ship Evacuation Simulation Software Product and Associated Large Scale Testing Facility for the Collection of Human Shipboard Behaviour Data

Publication Type:

Journal Article


International Conference on Human Factors in Ship Design and Operation - The Royal Institution of Naval Architects - London, p.37-50 (2002)



When designing a new passenger ship or modifying an existing design, how do we ensure that the proposed design and crew emergency procedures are safe from an evacuation point of view? In the wake of major maritime disasters such as the Herald of Free Enterprise and the Estonia and in light of the growth in the number of high density, high-speed ferries and large capacity cruise ships, issues concerned with the evacuation of passengers and crew at sea are receiving renewed interest. In the maritime industry, ship evacuation models offer the promise to quickly and efficiently bring evacuation considerations into the design phase, while the ship is “on the drawing board”. maritimeEXODUS – winner of the BCS, CITIS and RINA awards – is such a model. Features such as the ability to realistically simulate human response to fire, the capability to model human performance in heeled orientations, a virtual reality environment that produces realistic visualisations of the modelled scenarios and with an integrated abandonment model, make maritimeEXODUS a truly unique tool for assessing the evacuation capabilities of all types of vessels under a variety of conditions. This paper describes the maritimeEXODUS model, the SHEBA facility from which data concerning passenger/crew performance in conditions of heel is derived and an example application demonstrating the models use in performing an evacuation analysis for a large passenger ship partially based on the requirements of MSC circular 1033.