Technology What to do if an electric car catches fire

What to do if an electric car catches fire

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When an electric car is hit, «the battery is automatically disconnected while the airbags and / or belt pretensioners jump. Even if the vehicle overturns, the battery is disconnected, ”says Arturo Pérez de Lucia, managing director of AEDIVE (Business Association for the Development and Promotion of Electric Vehicles). There are also emergency disconnections available to safely deactivate the vehicle’s electricity if it is necessary to proceed with the removal of passengers. In some models, in addition, there are some hatches that in case of fire melt giving way to extinguishing water.

However, the risk of fire in an electric car is lower than in other vehicles. Gasoline is highly flammable, although with the improvements introduced in vehicles in recent years, the chances of causing a fire in the engine in case of an accident have been reduced to practically zero. In this sense, electric cars are much safer, since the fact that batteries burn is unlikely, as recorded in the Mapfre blog.

Moreover, nowadays cars are becoming safer and more sophisticated, but this is also an added difficulty for rescue teams when there is an accident. And time is money when it comes to rescuing an injured trapped in a vehicle after a serious accident. From the RACC they ensure that the ten minutes that were previously required to open a vehicle and take out the accident now, with the latest generation vehicles, have become much more, since you have to have much more information to do it safely: where are the high voltage components, where are the airbag loads, what type of fuel the vehicle uses, what are the best body cut-off points …

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And we have never heard about what to do in case of an accident with an electric vehicle. What would be the method of action both ours and the authorities? From AEDIVE they offer us all the answers. “In reality, all vehicles, including electric vehicles, have a Rescue Sheet for emergency services, which, in the case of electric vehicles, report where the battery is disconnected, where there may be high-voltage equipment, how to attack the vehicle taking into account the disposition of the battery, in addition to other elements, ”says Pérez de Lucia.

The rescue sheet is a file that incorporates all the technical information necessary to open a vehicle quickly and safely. It has a standard format, valid for all of Europe. Why is it useful? Because if it is accessible inside the vehicle, any rescue body can have it immediately when it arrives at the accident, will understand and use it so that the accident release process is as fast and safe as possible.

Also, if the fire occurs inside the vehicle the danger is greater, since the seats and the roof is formed by highly flammable materials, and can generate a toxic smoke. After turning off the contact of the car, the best thing in this case (if you do not have a fire extinguisher), is to close the doors and windows so that no oxygen enters and thus get the flames to extinguish more quickly. .

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