Chevrolet, OnStar and leading national first-responder organizations have launched the first automotive manufacturer-sponsored training program to educate first responders nationwide on electric vehicle technology.
The announcement was jointly made at the San Francisco Fire Department with leaders of Chevrolet, OnStar, the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF), International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) and the National Emergency Number Association (NENA).
The training sessions will feature the Chevrolet Volt and will begin at the IAFC’s Fire-Rescue International Conference, 23-27 Aug. in Chicago. Together with OnStar, Chevrolet will also display the Volt at the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials conference 1-4 Aug. in Houston, and at the NENA conference, 5-10 June in Indianapolis. Chevrolet and OnStar will host first-responder sessions in Volt retail markets later this year including San Francisco, Los Angeles, Detroit and Washington, DC.
During the past several months, Chevrolet has collaborated with first-responder representatives from national safety organizations to develop educational materials for firefighters, law enforcement, emergency medical technicians and emergency dispatchers nationwide. This will help ensure the training meets the needs and answers the questions their colleagues are likely to have about electric vehicles.
Their feedback is being incorporated into training materials that will be available on the tour and posted on a targeted Web site for departments unable to attend the training sessions.
The training will include animation and illustrations of the Chevrolet Volt, highlighting locations of high-strength steel, cut points for extrication, first-responder labeling, automatic and manual electrical shut-off and more.
Chevrolet expects the Volt to achieve high safety ratings in government tests. More than 50 crash tests at various speeds and angles have been conducted in the development of the Chevrolet Volt to date, including front, side and rear impacts as well as rollovers. The Volt’s body structure is made up of nearly 80 percent high-strength steel and includes optimized restraint systems.