Safety and Standards

Rescue and Recovery

The support of rescue teams with technical information of vehicles leads to a more efficient emergency treatment of injured occupants after traffic accidents.

Accident assistance and recovering
vehicles with high-voltage systems

As various vehicle technologies continue to develop in the area of the powertrain and body, it is becoming more and more important for fire departments to receive detailed information about the vehicle that has been involved in an accident. For this purpose, vehicle manufacturers have been providing standardized rescue data sheets in digital form for many years now.

With the increasing diversity of new vehicles with electric drive trains, products and technologies, it becomes ever more complex to recommend procedures to members of the police and other organisations for danger prevention with vehicles involved in accidents.

Vehicle manufacturers will provide fire departments with information systems containing data relevant to the rescue and recovery of the vehicle that has been involved in an accident: as a result, the correct technical rescue procedure can be selected immediately, and patients can be provided with medical assistance as quickly as possible. In addition to the rescue data sheets, cooperative work carried out by the various representatives on the VDA “Rescue” working group (vehicle manufacturers, fire departments and ADAC) as well as wrecking companies and the German statutory accident insurance (DGUV) enabled guidelines to be drawn up for accident assistance and recovering vehicles with high-voltage systems. This guideline deals with all important technical matters that need to be borne in mind with regard to electrically or partially electrically powered cars and light commercial vehicles – starting with rescue and going on to recovery and towing, as well as transporting the vehicle safely to a suitable parking location. Retrofit solutions and conversions from providers not approved by vehicle manufacturers are not allowed to be considered in the guideline. These guidelines are now extended by informations for shutdown and hazards in 48-Volts- systems.

This document can be used by all fire departments and wrecking companies in the course of their training and continuing education. The document can be used internationally and is free of charge.


An additional source of information the “Fachbereich AKTUELL” Nr. 24 titled “Instructions for lithium-ion battery firefighting in vehicle fires” was made available. The document was published by the “German Social Accident Insurance” (DGUV).

In cooperation with the “German Energy Agency” (dena) a similar document was prepared for LNG vehicles. This document is made available at the dena website (available only in German language).

Eckehart Rotter
Eckehart Rotter Speaker

Tel: +49 30 897842-128 Fax: +49 30 897842-603
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