Mehrdad Arabi

ORCID Identifier(s)


Graduation Semester and Year




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Civil Engineering


Civil Engineering

First Advisor

Kyung Kate Hyun


The resilience of urban transportation networks is crucial for effective evacuation, and search and rescue operations as hurricane events become more severe and frequent. This dissertation presents a comprehensive approach to identifying and evaluating critical transportation links which are crucial for emergency preparedness and response. Integrating socio-economic and environmental vulnerabilities with traditional traffic management approaches, the research underscores the importance of equitable evacuation strategies that cater to the most vulnerable populations. Employing advanced spatial analysis and data analytics with real-time GPS data, the three individual papers in this dissertation offer a dynamic assessment of evacuation behaviors, capturing the complexities of traffic patterns during emergencies. The research also extends to support search and rescue operations through critical link identification by incorporating a wide array of variables across environmental, geographic, socioeconomic, and infrastructural domains in defining communities. This comprehensive approach allows for an accurate identification of critical transportation links, emphasizing the need for strategic planning that considers various risk factors. The results of this study highlight the influence of different community vulnerabilities in evacuation route criticality and the necessity of incorporating diverse variables, from environmental to infrastructural in identifying critical links for search and rescue operations. The findings advocate for a holistic and data-driven approach in urban planning and emergency management, focusing not only on the physical robustness of transportation networks but also on their capability to support diverse community needs during hurricane emergencies. As the risk of natural disasters continues to escalate, these insights are invaluable for developing resilient urban environments capable of effectively responding to and recovering from such catastrophic events.


Hurricane preparedness, Evacuation, Critical links, Vulnerability, Network analysis


Civil and Environmental Engineering | Civil Engineering | Engineering


Degree granted by The University of Texas at Arlington

Available for download on Sunday, February 01, 2026