The Suppliers Partnership for the Environment (SP), a forum for global automotive manufacturers and their suppliers, has launched a guidance document for the safe handling and storage of electric vehicle (EV) batteries.
According to SP, the document succinctly summarises some of the available resources, options, and considerations related to the handling of EV batteries after removal from vehicles. Topics include battery identification, safety prevention, thermal runaway, and the roles of authorities. The document also provides links to several relevant regulations and standards for people seeking additional information.
The guide was produced through a collaborative process by a subcommittee of SP’s Responsible Battery Work Group, which pooled its expertise and knowledge to prioritise EV battery safety. Co-chaired by Call2Recycle and Blue Whale Materials, committee members include OEMs such as General Motors, Honda Development & Manufacturing of America, Stellantis, and Toyota Motor North America, as well as companies engaged in the EV battery value chain such as Cellblock FCS, Cirba Solutions, Circulor, Energy Security Agency, Labelmaster, Li-Cycle, and ORBIS.
“We recognise that companies handling EV batteries after they are removed from vehicles might lack essential information and training to ensure safe handling,” said Jeff Haltrecht, Executive at Call2Recycle. “Similarly, individuals may unknowingly take risks in their sincere efforts to act responsibly. This guidance document serves to bridge this information gap in a rapidly evolving industry, where real-life case studies and best practices are limited.”
The document is written with battery holders in mind, including vehicle dealerships, vehicle dismantlers and recyclers, independent workshops, warehouse operators, transport operators, tow truck operators and storage yard holders, first responders, aftermarket diagnostic sites, battery re-purposers, and battery re-manufacturers.
“High-voltage batteries can present significant risks if mishandled and taking proactive steps such as developing a comprehensive emergency preparedness and fire prevention plan is key in mitigating those risks,” said, David Fauvre, co-founder and Chief Strategy Officer of Blue Whale Materials. “Items like appropriate PPE and tools and materials for thermal runaway identification, containment, and extinguishing, play an important role in minimising potential hazards as well. This document was designed to help educate others on some of the key safety prevention factors they may want to consider when handling EV batteries.”
The guidance document is available to download for free here.