Many police and fire officials have expressed concerns about what to do when responding to accidents involving hybrid-electric vehicles (HEVs), says Richard Bettendorf, a dean of technical instruction at San Diego Miramar College.

“We now have first-response training” for HEVs, he says. “It is important for police and firemen to know where the disconnect is for high-voltage systems.”

And, if using extricating tools to remove occupants from a wrecked HEV, it's important for emergency crews to know “where not to puncture the vehicle,” says Bettendorf referring to the battery units.