Hybrid and Electric Vehicles

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Hybrid and Electric Vehicles
March 2013 Fire Training
What is the difference
between a hybrid vehicle
and an electric vehicle?
What are some potential risks
associated with hybrid and
electric vehicles involved in
emergency incidents?
Vehicle Accident/Extrication
Fire
Submersion
Hybrid Vehicles
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•
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Internal combustion engine and electric motor
< 30 mph – Battery power
> 30 mph – Gasoline engine
Batteries charge as you drive
Electric Vehicles
• Require an external
source to recharge
• Regenerative Braking
HV Battery
Volts, Amps, and Current
Volts
• Electrical potential in a circuit
• Electromotive force
• Example - PSI in hose stream
Amps
• Current – Number of electrons moving past a
fixed point in one second
• Current is measured in amps
Current
• Low current can be harmful if backed by a
significant amount of voltage
Direct Current (DC)
• Electrons move in one direction
• Mostly found in things that are powered by
batteries
• 12-volt battery
Alternating Current (AC)
• Travels in multiple directions
• Power used to supply homes and businesses
• AC has the ability to readily change voltages
Circuits
• For current to flow there most be a completed
path
• Hybrid/Electric vehicles can operate in
excess of 100 amps or 10,000 milliamps
– 6 milliamps – Unable to let go of conductor
– 70 milliamps – Burns
– 105 milliamps – Heart stops
Types of Hybrids
• Full
• Mild
• Start-Stop
• Plug-in
Full Hybrid
• Most hybrids on the road
• Electric motor either assists engine or propels
the vehicle at low speeds
– Toyota Prius, Ford Escape
Mild Hybrid
• Electric motor is only designed to assist the
gasoline engine
• Does not propel the vehicle
– Honda Civic, Honda Insight
Start-Stop Hybrid
• Intermediate voltage system
• Allows the engine to shut down instead of
idling
• Electric engine does not propel the vehicle
– Chevy Malibu
Pure Electric
• Nissan Leaf (weighs 660 lbs.)
• Average 73 miles on full charge
• Zero Gas – 100% electric
Extended Range Electric Vehicle (EREV)
• Can travel 40 miles on battery power alone
• Onboard gasoline engine turns the electric
generator and recharges the battery
• Chevy Volt
High Voltage Batteries
• Nickel Metal Hydride (Hybrid)
– 100-400 volts
• Lithium Ion (Electric)
• Location in Hybrids is almost always located in
the truck or under second row seats
• Located under the floor in electric vehicles
What should high voltage mean to you?
• Orange Cables
– > 60 volts
• Yellow or Blue cables
– Intermediate voltage system
DC
• 12 volt battery
• For current to flow, there must be a completed
path
• DC-DC Converter
– Takes high voltage battery to 12-volts to power things
like the radio, headlights, airbags, etc.
Operating Procedure
• Identify
• Immobilize
• Disable
• Additional Hazards
– High voltage electrical system
– Unanticipated vehicle movement
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•
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•
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Establish command
Primary Size-up
360 Size-up (Identify)
Deploy Hose Line
Immobilize
Disable
Patient care
Hazard control
Terminate Command
Immobilize
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•
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Cribbing
Approach from the side
Place the vehicle in park
Engage the emergency brake
Disable
• Shut off the ignition
• Disconnect the 12-volt battery
– Shuts down both the 12-volt battery and DC-DC
Converter
Proximity Key
• If the key can be
located, remove it at
least 16 feet from the
vehicle
Can’t shut off the ignition?
• Locate the fuse that runs the high voltage
system
• Just shutting down the 12-volt battery is not
enough, the ignition must be disabled as well
Vehicle Fire
Can I use water?
• DC electricity follows from the battery, along
the electrical circuit and back to the battery
• AC electricity
– Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI)
• Immediately shuts down power if there is a short
• Batteries will burn for a long time
Submerged Vehicles
• Manufactures
recommend removing
the vehicle from the
water just like any
other vehicle
• You will not be shocked
by an electric or hybrid
vehicle that is
submerged
Helpful Resources
AC Hotstick
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One for each engine
One on each squad
Structure fires
Vehicle accidents
Lines down
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