September 9, 2014 – The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recently received a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) “Assistance to Fire Fighters - Fire Prevention and Safety” grant to develop NFPA’s Alternate Fuel Vehicle Safety Training. NFPA’s online program will be used to provide free training to the U.S. fire service on safe handling of electric, hybrid, hydrogen fuel cell, compressed natural gas, liquefied natural gas, and liquefied petroleum gas at incidents involving passenger vehicles, trucks, and buses.
NFPA’s Emergency Responder Technical Advisory Panel identified alternate fuel vehicles, particularly the proliferation of alternative fuel buses and trucks, as the single most important emerging technology that needs to be addressed throughout the fire service.
While NFPA has already developed and implemented electrical vehicle (EV) training programs for the fire service, the latest FEMA grant enables NFPA to broaden its scope on multiple fronts.
“Our initial efforts to create and deliver EV training have been very successful, but they only addressed hybrid and electrical vehicle safety,” said Andrew Klock, NFPA’s Senior Project Manager in Training Development. “The new funding allows us to enhance our existing training programs by addressing a much more comprehensive range of alternative fuel vehicles.”
More specifically, the FEMA grant will help NFPA:
- Develop an online safety course addressing gaseous fuels (CNG, LNG, LPG, and hydrogen) and their refilling stations
- Develop “stranded energy” best practices for working with high-voltage vehicle batteries
- Develop online training programs for Apple, Windows, and Androids platforms
- Create highly visual, state-of-the-art animations and simulations that make the online training concepts and practices easy to visualize and understand
- Update the existing Emergency Field Guide with alternative fuel vehicles and on-scene extrication training
Klock also notes that all NFPA online alternative fuel vehicle safety training programs will be provided free of charge for the next year, which he expects will maximize participation from the fire service.
“To date, we’ve trained 38,000 firefighters on handling EV incidents, but with 1.2 million volunteer and full-time firefighters in the U.S., we still have a long way to go,” said Klock. “My hope and expectation is that by lifting cost barriers, we’ll be able to reach and engage many more fire departments throughout the country.”
NFPA is the ANSI-accredited national codes and standards developer for emergency responder qualifications, equipment, and tactics, as well as the codes and standards developer for vehicle fueling. NFPA’s National Electrical Code® (NEC) has established standards for electric vehicle charging stations, electrified truck parking spaces, and the impact of EV charging infrastructures on power consumption and emergency responders. NFPA 2, Hydrogen Technologies Code, NFPA 30A, Motor Fuel Dispensing Facilities and NFPA 52, Vehicle Gaseous Fuel Systems Code define our nation’s standards on vehicle gaseous fuel systems design and installation—including hydrogen, CNG, LNG, and LPG—and the dispensing facilities codes that coincide with these gases.
For more information about NFPA’s current electric and hybrid vehicle program, visit our Electric Vehicle Safety Training section.
About the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)
NFPA is a worldwide leader in fire, electrical, building, and life safety. The mission of the international nonprofit organization founded in 1896 is to reduce the worldwide burden of fire and other hazards on the quality of life by providing and advocating consensus codes and standards, research, training, and education. NFPA develops more than 300 codes and standards to minimize the possibility and effects of fire and other hazards. All NFPA codes and standards can be viewed at no cost at www.nfpa.org/freeaccess.
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Contact: Lorraine Carli, Public Affairs Office: +1 617 984-7275