Essay by Eric Worrall
Should Electric Vehicles be banned from airports and ferries?
Five cars destroyed at Sydney Airport after battery from luxury electric vehicle ignites
By Olivia Ireland
September 12, 2023 — 4.48pm
Five cars have been destroyed at Sydney Airport after a battery from a luxury electric car burst into flames.
About 8.30pm on Monday, firefighters were called to a parking lot on Airport Drive in Mascot after flames engulfed a luxury electric car before spreading to another four vehicles.
Research officers from Fire and Rescue’s Safety of Alternative and Renewable Energy Technologies team have also been at the scene.
Fire and Rescue NSW Superintendent Adam Dewberry said … “There had been some problem with the car and the battery had been removed, we believe that the car has suffered some mechanical damage which can contribute to a battery breaking down and catching fire without notice.
“We don’t have a concern about this broadly, it’s not often that electric cars catch fire.”
Read more: https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/five-cars-destroyed-at-sydney-airport-after-battery-from-luxury-electric-vehicle-ignites-20230912-p5e43h.html
The fire chief Adam Dewberry claims they don’t have a concern about this broadly, but in that case, why do they need a special fire department renewable energy technologies team?
Even if an EV needs minor accident damage to turn it into a ticking time bomb, airports are notorious for minor bumps and scrapes, lots of people arrive late and have to rush to catch their flight. If a minor bump can turn an EV into a ticking time bomb, at the very least EVs should be isolated in their own fire hazard area, especially if they show any signs of damage.
As for passenger ferries, I mean we’ve all seen what an EV can do to a vehicle transport ship – ferocious white hot flames which can’t be quenched, even by experienced maritime fire control officers.
Even if the risk is small, it’s still only a matter of time until a group of EV’s parked next to each other on board a passenger ferry catch fire and torch the entire ship, leading to massive loss of life, and lifelong injuries to survivors who inhaled toxic lithium smoke.