Around 70 members from the Baw Baw Group of fire brigades have added electric vehicle (EV) fire safety to their training portfolio following their recent group exercise at Nilma North Primary School.
The volunteers received hands-on training in the safe handling of EVs and became well-equipped with necessary safety protocols for dealing with accidents or emergencies involving them.
The training showcased the latest information from EV FireSafe, ensuring the brigades were briefed with the most up-to-date knowledge and skills. EV FireSafe is an Australian company funded by the Department of Defence to research EV and lithium-ion batteries and emergency response.
CFA volunteer and EV FireSafe instructor Emma Sutcliffe led the program and was praised for her engaging delivery that saw attendees depart the session well-prepared to deal with EV accidents, and with the knowledge to pass onto their fellow firefighters.
Noojee Captain Dave Blacker, who coordinated the day, said responding to an EV accident differs from a conventional car accident, but for most eventualities even small brigades can safely handle the basics with some simple training.
“Despite reservations due to a lack of experience with this technology, the attendees quickly became accustomed to the exercises thanks to the clear directive from EV FireSafe,” he said.
“The education received is such a valuable asset for participants to take back to their respective brigades and to not only share with the other volunteers, but also to incorporate into their upcoming turnouts.
“We were honoured to learn from Emma and benefit from her expertise. In time, the package we used today will be made available to all brigades, along with training materials and procedures that are currently being prepared by EV FireSafe for CFA.”
Captain Blacker said members in the Baw Baw Group are committed to staying up to date with the latest firefighting techniques and equipment.
“This joint training session was an example of that, and we’ll continue to seek out new opportunities for training and education,” he said.