Madison Area Technical College (MATC), an NAFTC National Training Center member, conducted the Train-the-Trainer version of the NAFTC’s First Responder Safety Training Hybrid Electric Vehicles (HEVs) in January for seven full-time automotive instructors, three part-time automotive instructors, and four part-time fire science instructors. The participants went through the classroom training utilizing the course manual and PowerPoint followed by additional background instruction on HEVs. A Toyota Prius was on hand as well as a Honda Civic high-voltage battery assembly, a Prius high-voltage battery, and a Prius (first generation) Synergy control unit. Participants also were able to view many of the items that are included in a high-voltage safety kit including gloves and sockets.
The fire science instructors that will assist MATC in teaching the training in the future are all part-time instructors because they serve as full-time fire fighters and/or paramedics. According to Jeff Minter, Automotive Instructor at MATC, after completing the training, the fire science instructors expressed how well the material was put together and how they now felt much more comfortable about dealing with hybrid vehicles. They also said how excited they are about getting this material out to the local fire and rescue departments as well as being involved in the instruction.