Today, we’re talking electric vehicles. If you live in LA, like I do, you see them every day. Teslas are everywhere and with various hybrids of every make.
But there are a lot of places where electric vehicles –called EVs—or hybrids still aren’t common.
Problem is, these cars can be really dangerous when you do find one in an MVA.
Time was, we worried about electrical shock. But those were the early days, and the bright orange power cables have pretty well taken care of that.
Now, the worry is thermal runaways. That’s when the lithium-ion battery gets so hot it starts a chain reaction that makes it tough to extinguish.
And a lot of departments aren’t doing specialized training on how to deal with EV fires.
That’s why today we’re talking with Captain Evan Gammage of the Phoenix Arizona Fire Department. They’ve seen massive growth in EVs involved in crashes and have learned to work them differently.
Don’t let inexperience with these vehicles let them cause property damage, or worse, firefighter injuries.
Take a look at some resources:
Presentation by NFPA: Electric Vehicle Safety Training for Emergency Responders
From FireRescue1: NTSB: U.S. fire service not prepared to fight electric vehicle fires
From Firehouse: MFRI Drill of the Month: Electric Vehicle Fires: Tesla
From ARSTechnica.com: New firefighting tool delivers water directly to blazing EV batteries