The number of electric, hybrid, fuel cell, and gaseous fuel vehicles on our nation's roadways currently exceeds 15 million and is growing. Damaged batteries, silent operation, high strength steel and fires involving these types of vehicles pose the highest degree of potential danger to both response teams and vehicle occupants -- including toxic fumes, high voltage, and delayed fire hazards.
It is essential that Fire and EMS responders are trained and prepared to address potential hazards and know how to handle Electric, Hybrid, Fuel Cell, and Gaseous Fuel Trucks, Buses, Commercial Fleet and Passenger Vehicle challenges safely and effectively. This training is becoming an essential piece of a responder's day to day activities, as the number of alternative fuel vehicles (AFV) continues to grow.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) offers U.S. emergency responders free access to online training, videos, animations, simulations, data review questions, scenario rooms, 3D interactive environments, quick reference materials, and research data.
The nation's fire and life safety leader, the NFPA's Emergency Field Guide (2015 edition) is a source for the latest facts on safe response to alternative fueled trucks, buses, commercial fleet and passenger vehicle incidents involving damaged high voltage batteries, battery fires, extrication challenges, submersion, and charging stations. This guide covers the vital aspects of electric, hybrid, fuel cell, and gaseous fuel hazard awareness and procedures -- including information from related NFPA codes and OEMs.
The guide also features gaseous fuel vehicle safety information including bio-diesel, Compressed Natural Gas (CNG), Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG), and Propane (LPG direct from the auto manufacturers.
Procedures and full-color graphics are specific to each vehicle. Content includes:
*NFPA is offering the PDF of the Guide free of charge to the US Fire Service. It can be found at https://www.nfpa.org/training-and-events/by-topic/alternative-fuel-vehicle-safety-training.
For links to guides for specific vehicles, check this page out:
Below is a bulletin, also developed by the NFPA that highlights the hazards and provides guidance to emergency responders working with hybrid/electric and fuel cell vehicles that have been submerged in water.
Make sure you have the latest on AFV safety response!