DIY Electric Car Forums banner

Emergency Responder Warnings

225010 Views 46 Replies 24 Participants Last post by  DaveEV
I was reading about the Chevy Volt and saw that they had very explicit instructions about disarming the car in emergencies. Similar instructions appropriate for an EV could make things safer for occupants, first responders and could save equipment from unnecessary damage.
1 - 20 of 47 Posts

· Administrator
Joined
·
6,613 Posts
Good Idea,

I intend to have a manual disconnect to separate the pack from the vehicle
and an intermediate manual disconnect (Anderson connector?) to split the pack into two segments

Instructions to Emergency Services

(1) - Pull big red lever - in front of handbrake
(2) - under the bonnet - pull Red Handle - marked Emergency disconnect
 

· Administrator
Joined
·
6,613 Posts
look for large orange cables leading to the controller and/or batteries and to cut them with insulated cutters.

I can't help thinking that that would make the danger worse as there would now be an uninsulated high voltage end flopping about
 

· Registered
Joined
·
2,229 Posts
I think i spotted on a forum last year that certain parts of canada had banned ev conversions then changed their minds but specified a large warning sticker had to fixed to the car. I wonder if we could get those?
 

· Registered
Joined
·
4,334 Posts
I think i spotted on a forum last year that certain parts of canada had banned ev conversions then changed their minds but specified a large warning sticker had to fixed to the car. I wonder if we could get those?

if you have a picture, lots of the vinyl sticker shops can copy and make'em, for ya. However, I think a scarey looking sticker might scare off a Responder when you most need it!

The key I think is for YOU to build a vehicle with multiple safeties like:
- mid-pack fuse - quick acting
- main circuit breaker - slow acting
- manual pull disconnect - reachable from driver's window and seat
- inertia switch on main contactor/controller

...probably some legislated standard like the the manual pull disconnect MUST be near the driver's left knee and have some standard color/graphic so it can be accessed from driver's window by Responders....

and some mechanical safety standards, as much as I hate regulation, for our own good like:
- some standard sticker/emblem on exterior of driver's door indicating vehicle has high voltage
- main battery cabling from pack to motor must be routed under the center of the car to
avoid 'jaws of life' that typically cut doorsills and pillars
- batteries terminals and bus bars must be covered to prevent accidental shorts
 

· Registered
Joined
·
4,334 Posts
The driver's air bag firing should trigger a circuit breaker. Saying this, I have no knowledge of air bags or the way they work other than a novel I read claimed the explosive material was very poisonous.

the whole idea of an inertia switch in the main contacter loop is exactly this. in an impact strong enough to deploy an airbag, the main would open... just like the original design cuts power to the fuel pump. no need to tie it to the airbag system. easy to add, even in pre-airbag cars.
 

· Admin: 'one of many'
Joined
·
4,841 Posts
I should have thought of that. Maybe we can get Woodsmith to make a sticky to keep the recommendations in one spot.
I have made the thread a sticky, for the time being.


Please use this thread for specific ideas and solutions and not for general discussion, debate and other unrelated banter.

Thank you,
Admin
 

· Registered
Joined
·
4,334 Posts
ok, so.. just to summarize the related info. For Emergency Responder safety and comfort in rescue should you ever need it, I would recommend:

- designs to include routing HV under middle of car to avoid possible cuts w/ jaws of life, main pack fuse, circuit breaker, key-switch contactor, and:

- inertia switch in the key-switch 12v+ to your main contactor which will cut power in case of crash

- some obvious badge or sticker on driver's side at very least identifying vehicle as electric (presuming they understand that means having high-voltage)

- manual pull 'kill' switch/lever/pull reachable from outside driver's window that a Responder might be able to see and pull to feel 'safe' before going in w/ jaws of life....
 

· Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
I have my own vinyl cutter and made some 3" high voltage (triangle with lightning bolt inside) and put one on the back and high on both front fenders. My car also has "electric" stickers on it. I plan on integrating an inertia switch soon too.

My ultimate plan would be to get the DMV license plate division to issue a new plate for electric vehicles. That way we could use our local parking charging stations (gas cars get ticketed if they park there) and let people know the vehicle is electric.


Here is a link for the U.S. NATIONAL ELECTRIC VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARDS SUMMIT report. Don't know if anyone has looked through it but it has quite a lot of information for the safety standards for mew EV's.
http://www.nfpa.org/assets/files/PDF/Research/RFUSNEVSSSummit.pdf
 

· Registered
Joined
·
747 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I hastily scanned the U.S. NATIONAL ELECTRIC VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARDS SUMMIT report. It appears to be a report on the meeting. I didn't find any definite recommendations. It did mention NEC 625 which covers charging electric vehicles. It appears that charging at over 120 volts or 20 amps could have some insurance implications.

NEC article 625 and Electric Vehicles

http://modularevpower.com/Charging%20Station/NEC%20625.htm
 

· Registered
Joined
·
440 Posts
I am putting a decal on the bottom left corner of the windscreen (near the VIN#) that says "In emergency pull yellow connector by hand brake". There is the large anderson connector right obviously there. I also encased the + and - in separate 1" pvc from trunk to front batteries. One time one of the electric order pickers stuck on forward for no reason (contactors welded shut) with no stopping it. Running past customers until the driver had the savy to run it into the wall, VERY scary as you think about it.

Francis
 

· Registered
Joined
·
4,334 Posts
... I also encased the + and - in separate 1" pvc from trunk to front batteries.
not exactly a safety issue, but caught my eye. you may be better off to run the + and - together inside a larger pipe. The closer together they are, the more they cancel each others EMF, and would have more air space around them for cooling for continuous high current draw.... but that is a minor concern. ;)

You also should try to run down the center of the car, perhaps in the old exhaust tunnel, and avoid runs along the edges so as not to be subject to damage in accident or cut with 'jaws of life' if they need to pry open doors.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
50 Posts
There is also a heavy duty switch we use in our drag cars to disconnect power in an accident or fire. That switch is usualy located on the outside of the car at the rear as a turn switch or a push pull on off. These switches are off heavy equipment rated at high volts and I believe 2000 amps. Most emergency responders are familiar with these switches here in the US. Only problem is there always turns out to be a funny guy who likes to pull or turn a switch located on the outside of a vehicle just for fun to see what happens, so probably not a good idea to put it outside & clearly marked but a thought.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
My project is a two door hatchback. I'm thinking of putting a label on the two fixed windows behind the doors and on the hatchback glass. I'm reluctant to use the word "Danger", but I do want to put a diagram on it. That way, First Responders would feel comfortable using whatever means necessary to get anyone out. Here's the label I'm thinking of:
Motor vehicle Automotive exterior Vehicle Car Mode of transport


My goal was to show the cable routing as well as the location and count of batteries. I also wanted to highlight that they're not exotic LifePo or Flooded Lead Acid batteries.

I didn't want to get into locations of fuses, disconnects, or the impact sensor. I just wanted to provide reassurance that it's okay to chew up the doors or pillars as necessary.

Comments Welcome,
Phillip
 

· Registered
Joined
·
4,334 Posts
My project is a two door hatchback. I'm thinking of putting a label on the two fixed windows behind the doors and on the hatchback glass. ... I just wanted to provide reassurance that it's okay to chew up the doors or pillars as necessary.

thats nice! AND provides info for the casual parking lot neighbor that will see it ;)


d
 
1 - 20 of 47 Posts
Top