- Florida state officials warned owners of electric vehicles on Monday to move their vehicles and other lithium-ion battery-powered devices away from areas that may see storm surge associated with Hurricane Idalia.
- The National Hurricane Center reported on Wednesday at 8 a.m. that the eye of Hurricane Idalia moved inland along Florida’s west coast as a Category 3 hurricane.
- According to the State Fire Marshal’s Office, 21 EV battery fires were associated with Hurricane Ian, which struck Florida in October 2022.
Florida Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis said in a statement, “We know that the saltwater from storm surge can compromise these batteries, causing fires which cannot be easily suppressed.”
The National Hurricane Center issued a storm surge warning in Florida from Englewood north to Indian Pass, including Tampa Bay, and from St. Catherine’s Sound in Georgia to the South Santee River in South Carolina. The NHC advisory warned of a “catastrophic storm surge” along the immediate coast, “accompanied by large and destructive waves.”
As of July, nearly 168,000 electric vehicles were registered in Florida, according to data provided by the U.S. Department of Energy. “Take this threat seriously. If there’s even a small risk of your EV being impacted by storm surge, move it to higher ground before it’s too late,” Patronis said.