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Patrick Durham

Patrick Durham serves as the captain and training officer at Station 4 within the Troy (Michigan) Fire Department. Durham is a mechanical engineer, presently engaged in cutting-edge automotive industry projects. Notably, he has been involved in designing innovative multi-material battery structures for electric vehicles. Drawing from over 15 years of combined experience as a firefighter and engineer, Durham has developed specialized training courses for firefighters, as well as YouTube content, focusing on various technical aspects, including the specific challenges associated with responding to incidents involving EVs. Durham is also a member of the Technical Panel for Fire Safety of Batteries and Electric Vehicles at UL’s Fire Safety Research Institute, where he contributes his expertise to advance the field of fire safety in the context of emerging battery technologies and electric vehicles. Learn more at StacheD Training or reach Durham via e-mail.

Understand vehicle construction to effectively and safely manage EV fires and crashes
Firefighters love testing new tactics and tools, but some methods simply don’t address the key issue with EV fires
Understanding the shift from traditional 12-volt systems to innovative 48-volt architectures, with high-voltage systems becoming the new norm
Without data, the extent of the problem is unknown
The event underscored the need for additional research, plus enhanced training and situational awareness, related to this hazard
From chemical make-up to cell construction, not all lithium-ion batteries are the same
Submerged vehicles can experience thermal runaway if water leaks into the battery box
Reflecting on the importance of preparation, follow-through and endurance