When I saw that the Grand Rapids Fire Department is training for electric vehicle fires I thought maybe it's because there is a push for people to switch to electric vehicles because gas prices continue to climb.

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That might be a good reason but it's not why the Grand Rapids Fire Department is training for electric vehicle fires.

Why Is The Grand Rapids Fire Department Training For Electric Vehicle Fires

Fire departments are constantly training to make sure they're ready for anything when they get the call for help. While electric vehicle fires are not a major issue in West Michigan they could be in the future. Grand Rapids Fire Department Captian Paul Mason told Wood TV:

It’s not a major problem in Grand Rapids now, but we anticipate that changing as the use of those batteries becomes more prevalent.

By 2030 it's estimated that close to 28 million electric vehicles will be on the road and these vehicles can pose some dangerous situations for firefighters.

GRFD Takes Part In Electric Vehicle Emergency Response Training

Captian Mason and other members from the GRFD recently went through training at a local Tesla training center.

What Did They Learn At The Electric Vehicle Emergency Response Training

Captian Mason said that they learned from Tesla engineers and mechanics how the car works in general, how to access the battery compartment, how to de-energize the vehicle, and where some of the key hazard points are located.

Why Are Electric Vehicle Fires So Hard To Put Out

Captian Mason explained why electric vehicle fires are so hard to put out

The traditional, spraying of water on the fire doesn’t work because the batteries burn too hot. Getting to the burning material is more difficult because the batteries are encased.


A great example of this happened in California. After a Tesla was involved in an accident it was towed to a salvage yard where it caught on fire. It took firefighters more than 4,500 gallons to extinguish the flames. A typical car fire only takes about 1,000 gallons of water to put out.

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