Guide for assistance & recovery in accidents involving vehicles with high-voltage systems

To support first responders (police, Federal Agency for Technical Relief (THW), fire department and EMS) in their work, vehicle manufacturers have been offering downloadable standardized rescue data sheets on a model-specific basis in Germany since 2008. In order for the information to reach first responders even more quickly, the "SilverDAT FRS" software, which was developed by Deutsche Automobil-Treuhand (DAT) on behalf of VDA and VDIK, was introduced already in early 2013 in order to allow for online queries. Upon entering the license plate of the vehicle involved in the accident it only takes mere seconds for the vehicle model-specific rescue data sheet to be displayed on-screen at the emergency coordination center.

However, when it comes to recovering damaged vehicles with high-voltage systems, i.e. most hybrid and electric vehicles, the growing electrification of vehicle drives raises questions regarding the handling of these systems.

In order to provide all individuals at the scene of the accident with recommendations on how to proceed safely and purposefully in the recovery effort, the VDA project group for 'the recovery of crashed vehicles with high-voltage systems' has developed and published this guide in cooperation with the VDIK.

The rapid technical development of vehicles with high voltage systems required the guidelines to be updated and revised. This is addressed by the 2017 version of the guidelines, which answers typical questions associated with the handling of vehicles fitted with high voltage batteries and drivetrains that have been involved in an accident.