Access-To Egress III: Repeated Measurement of Factors That Control the Emergency Evacuation of Passengers Through the Transport Airplane Type-III Overwing Exit
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Access-To Egress III: Repeated Measurement of Factors That Control the Emergency Evacuation of Passengers Through the Transport Airplane Type-III Overwing Exit

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    Final Report
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    The factors that control emergency evacuation from transport aircraft are many. The physical factors include the aircraft structure and the configuration of aircraft interior components such as aisles, seating arrangements, monument placements, and crewmember assist spaces. Information factors related to emergency evacuation include safety briefing cards and videos, signs, placards, emergency lighting and marking systems, and verbal briefings by the crew. Trained crewmembers perform the functions necessary to initiate and conduct emergency evacuations, providing passenger management functions intended to produce fast and effective evacuations. Individual passengers have a large, typically negative, impact on the conduct of emergency evacuations, resulting from their general naivete regarding aircraft emergencies and the proper procedures needed to cope with such circumstances. Egress through the Type-III overwing exit is particularly susceptible to this deficiency, since passengers typically must operate the exit as well as use it. Research efforts conducted to define the relative contributions of these factors have been focused to a large degree on the interior configuration of transport aircraft, attempting to establish the appropriate access-to-egress required. These studies have employed an array of techniques and posited an assortment of experimental questions designed to address the issue, resulting in a comprehensive body of evidence related to access-to-egress, particularly for the Type-III exit. Additional information has been provided about many of the other factors that also exert control of evacuations, allowing assessments to be made regarding the relative importance of individual factors, and their various combination(s), on the outcome of emergency evacuations. This analytical review of the studies conducted to address access to the Type-III exit has confirmed that human factors effects related to passengers present the biggest challenge to the execution of successful evacuations. Deficiencies that may exist regarding configural and informational egress factors are expressed through their interactions with these human factors effects, which have often made determination of specific deficiencies more difficult. Solutions to overcoming deficiencies must address both the specific deficiency and its interactiveness.
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