Fire and police departments learn about Chevy Volt safety

2011 Chevrolet Volt

Car lovers, environmentalists, and automotive analysts alike realize the revolutionary changes that electric cars like the Chevy Volt will bring; now, firefighters and policemen are learning too. GM has scheduled five seminars in Auburn Hills, San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, and Austin this fall to teach first responders about the ins and outs of the new automobile. The timing of these seminars, scheduled before and as the Volt goes into production this November, mean that emergency response units will be able to attack and understand the car in an academic environment before dealing with its quirks and new safety features in the chaotic real world.

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In particular, units wanted to know how to tell whether the Volt”s battery was still on, how to deactivate it, how to get through the steel cage surrounding the car, and what to watch out for in an emergency situation. One important lesson from the seminar: the car”s battery turns off automatically, meaning that the lack of engine noise from the battery should not be a problem.

Not having to wonder about things like the battery came as a great relief to the responders, who as a whole valued the opportunities to become better acquainted with the important new automobile, which has a full rollout coming in 2012.

Refresher: The 2011 Chevrolet Volt is powered by 16-kWh, “T”-shaped lithium-ion battery that powers the electric drive unit, which allows it to drive 40 miles on battery power alone. The system puts out 149-hp and a maximum torque of 273 lb-ft, allowing the Volt to go from 0-60 mph in about 9 seconds, hitting a top speed of 100 mph. The battery can be re-charged by plugging into a household outlet and takes 4 hours to recharge on 240 volts, and about 10-12 hours on a standard 120-volt outlet. The Chevrolet Volt also carries an 84-hp 1.4 4-clyinder engine that allows the five-door, FWD sedan to travel additional miles while averaging a fuel-economy of 50 mpg. A fully charged battery and full tank of gas will allow the Volt to travel 310 miles. Prices for the 2011 Chevrolet Volt start at $41,000 but with a full federal income tax credit (which range from $0 to $7,500), the Volt can cost a total of $33,500.

2011 Chevrolet Volt:

– By: Omar Rana

Source: Detroit News