Challenges of Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Responses

Steve Kimker

Challenges of Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Responses

Understanding new vehicle construction while responding to incidents involving electric vehicles (EV's) and Hybrid Electric Vehicles (HEV's) New vehicles are now designed around the propulsion systems (batteries) and how our techniques must change to mitigate emergencies in the battery systems, charging systems, high voltage converters, wiring, and computer systems. Earlier vehicles simply replaced combustion engines with batteries and a smaller system. The vehicles of today and tomorrow are designed around the batteries and 2-4 high voltage wheel motors that propel these vehicles. Challenges of knowing the different methods of construction that protect the multi-cell, module, bricks of battery containers. How to access the systems for shutting down the vehicles safely. Fighting fires in these vehicles safely, efficiently, and effectively is becoming an ever increasing challenge. Understanding the chemical makeup of the Battery materials, flammable lubricants surrounding them, and limited access issues plague the fire service.