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by the NFCC

Control measure

Isolate rechargeable batteries

Control measure knowledge

Incidents involving rechargeable batteries may involve the spillage or release of hazardous materials; refer to:

Isolating batteries can reduce the immediate risks of electrical shock or other form of injury. Guidance on the isolation of separate battery types is not given here. Personnel should consider the need for consent if, for example, a battery is linked to a critical system.

Rechargeable batteries, even in a domestic context, can be hazardous. Personnel should only isolate batteries themselves if absolutely necessary and if unsure should refer to other sources of information such as responsible person or a manufacturer’s handbook and consider requesting specialist advice.

Rechargeable batteries found on an industrial scale are more hazardous because of their size. Isolation where possible should be performed by an on-site engineer or trained competent person.

Strategic actions

Fire and rescue services should:
  • Consider making electrical gloves available to personnel for use at incidents involving live electricity supply  

Tactical actions

Incident commanders should:
  •  Ensure personnel wear appropriate PPE, such as electrical gloves, to mitigate against hazards of chemicals and voltages

  • Consider the use of detection, identification and monitoring (DIM) equipment to monitor the release of gases

  • Consider isolating the batteries, taking into account the impact on any critical systems 

  • Consider the appropriate use of electrical gloves, in line with service procedures 

  • Seek specialist advice where the batteries cannot be isolated