Are you prepared to handle electric vehicles?
Electric vehicles have grown in popularity over the last few years. Besides being cost-effective, they are also very safe. But, they do pose some challenges when it comes to towing recovery.
There’s already been an increase in the number of electric-vehicle fires. While not as common, these types of fires can be dangerous.
Ensure your and your tow operators’ safety on the roads. Consider the following electric vehicle fire safety tips.
Identify the Vehicle Type
Before towing any vehicle, it’s important to determine if it is electric or hybrid. Electric vehicles rely on battery power. Hybrids combine an internal combustion engine with an electric motor.
Knowing the vehicle type will help you understand the potential fire risks. You can also determine the appropriate handling procedures.
Educate Tow Operators
Providing comprehensive training to tow operators is vital. This ensures they understand the specific risks and procedures, specifically in towing an electric vehicle.
Train them to recognize high-voltage components. These are the battery pack, electric motors, and power cables. They should also know how to disable the vehicle’s high-voltage system. This will cut the risk of fire or electrical shock.
Use Proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
Tow operators should always wear appropriate PPE when handling electric vehicles. This includes insulated gloves, safety goggles, and flame-resistant clothing.
Insulated gloves will protect against electric shock. While flame-resistant clothing can prevent injuries from potential fires.
Secure the Vehicle
When preparing to tow an electric vehicle, ensure that it is securely fastened to the tow truck. Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines or use specific EV towing equipment if available.
Avoid attaching tow straps or hooks to any high-voltage components. This may cause damage or increase the risk of electrical shock.
Assess for Fire Hazards
Before initiating the tow, conduct a thorough visual inspection of the vehicle for any signs of fire or potential hazards. Look for smoke, visible flames, or electrical arcing. If you detect any fire hazards, contact the appropriate emergency services and wait for their guidance.
Disconnect the 12-Volt Battery
Electric vehicles have a 12-volt auxiliary battery that powers the vehicle’s low-voltage systems. Before towing, disconnect the 12-volt battery. This will minimize the risk of electrical fire or unintended activation of vehicle systems.
Avoid Cutting High-Voltage Cables
Under no circumstances should tow operators attempt to cut or sever high-voltage cables in an electric vehicle. These cables carry extremely high levels of voltage and can cause severe injury or death.
Always consult the vehicle manufacturer’s guidelines. You can also contact the emergency security services for help if needed.
Store Electric Vehicles Appropriately
If an electric vehicle is in a fire incident during the towing process, it is crucial to store it properly. Park the vehicle away from other vehicles, structures, or flammable materials to prevent the spread of fire. Notify the appropriate authorities immediately and follow their instructions.
Continual Training and Preparedness
Stay up-to-date with the latest EV technology and safety procedures. A tow company should invest in regular training and education programs for its operators. This will ensure that they are well-prepared to handle any unforeseen circumstances effectively.
Become a Leader in Electric Vehicle Fire Safety
Electric vehicle fire safety is a priority for tow companies. There are many tips for tow companies to consider when dealing with EVs. Following these tips and regulations can help prevent fires from happening.
Fire safety should be taken seriously and prevention is invaluable. Take the first step towards safety today and get started on implementing these tips!
Please take a look at our blog for more educational articles.