i3 Scholars: Tony Arias, Tommy Bryson, Julia Cope, Vusumuzi Ngwazini, Kathryn Speckels, DeAndre’ Williams
Research Advisor: Dr. Cristina Robles Bahm, Assistant Professor, La Roche College
Video Abstract: Coming Soon
Firefighters’ Strategies for Processing Spatial Information During Emergency Rescue Searches
Julia Cope, Marco Arias, DeAndre’ Williams, Cristina Bahm, Vusumuzi Ngwazini. iConference 2019. Washington, DC, USA.
Abstract: Firefighters face a unique wayfinding situation when they are in emergency situations. This study aims to examine the strategies that firefighters use when in an emergency situation to provide insights for future research. In this study, we interview 12 firefighters from three regions of the US to understand the navigation strategies they use during rescue missions. After analyzing the results using grounded theory as a basis, we found that firefighters use various navigational strategies that serve one of four purposes, 1) to build a path, 2) to improve vision, 3) to create a cognitive map, and 4) to make directional decisions. From here, we hope to link these unique navigational purposes to actual tools that can help firefighters save lives.