University of Surrey

Test tubes in the lab Research in the ATI Dance Research

Escape behaviour in fires: Panic or affiliation.

Sime, Jonathan D. (1984) Escape behaviour in fires: Panic or affiliation. Doctoral thesis, University of Surrey (United Kingdom)..

Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial Share Alike.

Download (18MB) | Preview


Fire regulations for buildings and architectural designs aimed at providing escape routes in case of fire,rest on unexamined assumptions These are, briefly, that people 'panic' in fire and smoke and are therefore best kept in ignorance until the danger has been established that providing a variety of escape routes for use only in emergency will avert the surge to one entrance and the fight to escape through it. For shorthand this is called the panic concept or scenario. Evidence of real behaviour in fires does not support it. As will be shown, people appear to behave rationally in the light of the information they have. They also show marked preference for familiar routes and exits and concern for the safety of their family members. This is called the 'affiliation' model. Chapter 1 outlines the aims and structure of the thesis. Chapter 2 discusses the concept of panic and affiliative model. Chapter 3 reviews the existing research on escape behaviour in fires. Chapter 4 outlines the research strategy adopted: based on multivariate statistical analyses of categorical (frequency) data derived from interview accounts collected from fire survivors: Act sequence transitions, Multi-variate and Partial-Order Scalogram Analyses (MSA-1, POSA), Causal Loglinear Analysis (CLA). The analyses focus on Recognition of the fire threat, Role, Location, Group membership and Location, Direction of Movement. Chapter. 5 analyses the sequence of acts of 41 individuals in 14 domestic fires. Chapter 6 analyses the pattern and distance moved by 33 survivors of an hotel fire. Chapter 7 examines the exit choice behaviour by 75 people in the Marquee Showbar (MSB) (Summer-land Fire). Chapter 8 examines the pattern of affiliative behaviour of 128 people in the Solarium (Summerland). Chapter 9 analyses the outcome of escape behaviour for groups and individuals in the MSB and Solarium. In general, the affiliative model fits the results much more closely than the panic concept. Chapter 10 outlines the implications of the research, in particular the weakness in assuming people will use conventionally unfamiliar emergency escape routes.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Divisions : Theses
Authors :
Sime, Jonathan D.
Date : 1984
Contributors :
Additional Information : Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Surrey (United Kingdom), 1984.
Depositing User : EPrints Services
Date Deposited : 22 Jun 2018 14:26
Last Modified : 06 Nov 2018 16:53

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year

Information about this web site

© The University of Surrey, Guildford, Surrey, GU2 7XH, United Kingdom.
+44 (0)1483 300800