Evacuate people from the transport network

Control Measure Knowledge

This control measure should be read in conjunction with Evacuation and shelter


Consideration should be given to the evacuation of potentially large numbers of people from the transport network when producing Site-Specific Risk Information (SSRI) and developing incident plans. This should be carried out in conjunction with local emergency support services so that appropriate resources can be mobilised to assist during the emergency phase of an incident and beyond. For further information see Operations: Seek assistance for dealing with people.

Aerodromes, terminals and stations within the transport network should have defined evacuation strategies, including designated assembly points for fire-related incidents. These may also exist for larger modes of transport, including vessels such as cruise liners.

If people need to be evacuated from the transport network, providing appropriate and timely information may help to prevent secondary incidents occurring. For further information see Operations: Warn, inform and advise people.

If the transport network handles international travel, it may be necessary for border controls to be put in place. It may also be necessary for passengers to be repatriated.


Aerodrome emergency orders identify the key groups of people that could be affected by an emergency, and outline the structures and processes that are put in place to provide care and assistance for them.

To assist with controlling passengers evacuating from an aircraft, some aerodromes have introduced passenger emergency management systems to direct evacuating passengers and air crew to a rendezvous point (RVP). These systems vary, but primarily they are illuminated signs on the back of vehicles or freestanding signs, with a loudspeaker. These are erected in a safe location outside the inner cordon, but within the outer cordon of the incident, upwind and uphill.

The aerodrome ground operations team normally operate the passenger emergency management systems, but personnel should be aware of their existence. Personnel may need to direct or assist evacuating passengers, so that they can be triaged and receive medical treatment.


Evacuation routes should avoid power systems, including overhead line equipment (OLE) and conductor rail equipment (CRE). People should be evacuated to an appropriate refuge area, away from the hazards of the railway. The responsible person should assist in determining:

  • Evacuation routes, taking into account:
    • Underfoot conditions
    • Track conditions
    • Infrastructure hazards, such as embankments and tunnels
    • The physical abilities and medical condition of the people being evacuated
  • Suitable egress points
  • Refuge areas, taking into account rail vehicle movements, track and ground conditions

Unless the rail vehicle is at a platform, on-train emergency ladders should be used when evacuating. In order to avoid accidental contact with damaged overhead line equipment (OLE), evacuation should be carried out from a rail carriage that has not been compromised.


The police should co-ordinate the emergency response with the other core responders and supporting agencies, to restore safe use of the carriageway as soon as possible after an incident on a roadway.

To restore normality and traffic flow may require the removal of road vehicles or the evacuation of people. It may be necessary to create a pathway around the incident so that road vehicles or people can safely leave the area.


Egress from a vessel may include the use of on-board emergency escape chutes, gangways, accommodation ladders or vehicle loading ramps. The responsible person should assist with identifying evacuation routes and egress points.

Evacuation at locations such as ports or docks will require the assistance of the responsible person or authority. They should assist with identifying evacuation routes and appropriate egress points, taking into account hazards such as ground conditions and the presence of on-site vehicles and machinery.

Strategic Actions

Tactical Actions