Estimating the Economic Impacts Of Transportation-Related Supply Chain Disruptions In The Post-Earthquake Environment

Divya Chandrasekhar, University of Utah


"Estimating economic impact of transportation-related supply chain disruptions in the post-earthquake environment (Case Study: Wasatch Region)"

PI: Divya Chandrasekhar, City & Metropolitan Planning, University of Utah

Partner organizations: Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute, Utah Division of Emergency Management, Wasatch Front Regional Council, Utah Inland Port Authority.

Transportation systems play a critical role in maintaining supply chains necessary to the post-disaster recovery of communities by providing necessary goods and materials for relief and reconstruction. But we have limited understanding of how local businesses adjust and adapt to these transportation-related supply disruptions. The objectives of this study are: (1) to examine the economic impact of local supply chain disruption due to transportation loss; and (2) to examine actions taken by local businesses to maintain supply chain continuity in the face of transportation loss. 

The study will be conducted in two interlinked phases. The first phase involves integrating results from three popularly used models (HAZUS, the Wasatch Front Travel Demand Model, and REMI PI+) to identify industrial sectors expected to be most impacted by transportation loss in a M7.0 earthquake scenario within the Wasatch Front. The second phase involves a random sample telephone survey of 380-400 local businesses (95% CI, 5% error) of the Wasatch Front from within the high-impact sectors to assess their behaviors to manage supply in the face of the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic and the recent M5.7 Magna UT earthquake as well as their earthquake risk awareness in general. 

The Intellectual Merit of the study lies in its creation of a new, integrated and easily replicated framework to analyze the connection between transportation and economic resilience and its focus on small businesses, a typically understudied group. The Broad Impact of this study lies in its ability to improve transportation and supply chain resilience planning in the Wasatch Region—an issue that the State and region have identified as being critical to its overall disaster resilience—but also in other at-risk communities. 

Project Details

Project Type:
Project Status:
In Progress
End Date:
December 31,2021
UTC Grant Cycle:
NITC 16 Round 4
UTC Funding:

Other Products

  • Building regional disaster planning capacity through university-community partnerships (PRESENTATION)