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Parliamentary questions
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29 March 2019
Question for written answer E-001545-19
to the Commission
Rule 130
Karoline Graswander-Hainz (S&D)

 Subject:  Sources of danger in electric vehicles
 Answer in writing 

The most common causes of fires in electric vehicles are the battery catching fire and problems when recharging the battery. Electric vehicles can burn for up to 24 hours and can even re-ignite after the fire has initially been put out. Extinguishing such fires is made even more difficult for the fire services because the location of the battery connector plug varies from model to model. This causes valuable time to be lost as the source of the fire needs to be located. Another problem for first responders and occupants of electric cars is that battery fires produce extremely toxic aerosols which cause lasting damage to the lungs. First responders are thus exposed to a tremendous risk. There is a need for special training measures in electric vehicle identity markings, the dangers of high-voltage components, handling fire service interventions and disconnection points for electric vehicles to be provided for the emergency services in order to reduce the burden on them and mitigate the risks.

What will the Commission’s strategy for fire prevention and electric vehicles be? Are records kept on electric vehicle fires? Do EU-level investigations into the causes of such fires exist?

How is the problem of the varying locations of battery connection points being dealt with?

Will the Commission introduce unified, EU-wide training for the emergency services in order to mitigate the risks?

Original language of question: DE 
Last updated: 9 April 2019Legal notice