Emergency responders at risk from lithium-ion battery fires in electric vehicles

Published: October 6, 2022 7:22 PM EDT
Updated: October 7, 2022 9:38 AM EDT
(CREDIT: Naples Fire Department)

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigated three electric vehicle crashes resulting in postcrash fires and one non-crash fire involving an electric vehicle, all of which illustrate the risks to emergency responders posed by the vehicles’ high-voltage lithium-ion batteries.

(CREDIT: Naples Fire Department)

The NTSB also examined national and international standards established to maximize the safety of electric vehicles. Particular attention was given to the emergency guidance documents supplied by vehicle manufacturers to mitigate the safety risks to first and second responders who deal with electric vehicle crashes and high-voltage lithium-ion battery fires.

Fires in electric vehicles powered by high-voltage lithium-ion batteries pose the risk of electric shock to emergency workers.