Chevy Volt

NHTSA to hold meeting on the safety of lithium-ion batteries

The meeting, which is set for May 18, will discuss the status and safety of Li-ion batteries in vehicles.

A recent run of high profile lithium-ion battery related incidents has prompted the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to schedule a meeting with automakers to discuss the battery’s safety. The gathering, which is scheduled for May 18, will also delve into the future of the new technology.

“The purpose of this symposium is to bring together relevant stakeholders to share information on the status of safety activities related to the use of Li-ion batteries in vehicles designed for on-road use,” said the NHTSA.

Concern about lithium-ion batteries first arose last year when a Chevrolet Volt electric vehicle caught fire following a NHTSA crash test. The Volt ignited three weeks after a side-impact collision test was conducted at NHTSA facilities. The result prompted General Motors to modify the battery pack and coolant system. Since then the NHTSA has concluded, “no discernable defect rend” is apparent in the Volt. Despite the NHTSA’s comment and the fact that there have been no real-world Volt-related fires, public concern has lingered.


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