Conn. firefighters train for electric car incidents

Chevrolet, Nissan and BMW have all chosen Connecticut to market their electric vehicles

By Luther Turmelle
The New Haven Register

NEW HAVEN, Conn. — With the first mass-produced electric cars scheduled to arrive in Connecticut showrooms by year's end, firefighters will be learning how responding to accidents involving the vehicles differs from those involving traditional gas-powered ones.

Members of the Connecticut Fire Academy will be taking part in one of a trio of single-day workshops Monday through Wednesday at the New York City Fire Department's Fire Academy on Randall's Island, Gov. M. Jodi Rell said Friday.

The training is being sponsored by Chevrolet and OnStar.

The Chevrolet Volt is one of three electric vehicles that will be marketed in Connecticut; it is supposed to arrive in showrooms in the state by theof the year. Nissan and BMW also have chosen Connecticut to market their electric vehicles.

"It is critical that our first- responders have a working knowledge of this new technology to safely handle accident scenes and ultimately save lives," Rell said in a statement.

Connecticut's Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Council, which was established by Rell last year, has set a goal of 25,000 plug-in vehicles in the state by 2020.

Donna Tommelleo, a spokeswoman for Rell, said fire departments statewide have been notified of the training being offered by the New York City Fire Department.

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