NFPA Offers Emergency Responder Guides for EVs
by Karen Hall, FCHEA

NFPA recently added seven emergency responder's guides to their website. The newly posted guides are part of the National Fire Protection Association's Electric Vehicle Safety Training project.

NFPA's Electric Vehicle Safety Training project is a nationwide program to help firefighters and other emergency responders prepare for the growing number of electric vehicles on the road in the United States. NFPA offers online resources including research, articles, newsletters, interim guidance, and videos.

NFPA is collecting safety information from hybrid and electric vehicle manufacturers. To access these documents, users can simply click on the EV manufacturer link, then choose from the guides available for each EV vehicle.

To learn more, please visit:

NFPA 853 Update
by Karen Hall, FCHEA

The Technical Committee on Electric Generating Plants held their Second Draft Meeting on March 18 - 19, 2014 to discuss NFPA 853: Standard for the Installation of Stationary Fuel Cell Power Systems.

This standard provides fire prevention and fire protection requirements for safeguarding life and physical property associated with buildings or facilities that employ stationary fuel cell systems of all sizes.

Criteria cover design, construction, and installation requirements, including general equipment configuration, siting and interconnections, fuel supplies and storage arrangements, ventilation and exhaust, and fire protection. Specific provisions for fuel cell power systems 50kW or less are also included.

Click HERE for official document information.

The Technical Committee did not create any Second Revisions therefore no ballot will be created.

This will now be considered a consent document and will be forwarded to the Standards Council for approval for the 2015 revision.

FCHEA to Host International Standards Working Groups
by Karen Hall, FCHEA

The Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association (FCHEA) is pleased to welcome two International Working Groups from ISO/TC 197 (WG 19 and WG 20) to meet at FCHEA's office in Washington DC following the DOE Annual Merit Review.

ISO/TC 197 WG 19 held a kick-off meeting in France in December, 2013. They will hold their second meeting in Washington, DC, on June 23 (full day) and 24 (AM only). This Working Group (WG) is responsible for drafting ISO 19880-2: Gaseous Hydrogen - Fueling stations - Part 2: Dispensers, which will be based on work developed by CSA International. 

ISO/TC 197 WG 20 will meet on June 24 (PM only) and June 25 (full day), also at the FCHEA offices in Washington, DC. This WG is responsible for drafting ISO 19880-3: Gaseous Hydrogen - Fueling stations - Part 3: Valves, which will be based on work developed by CSA International. WG 20 also held their initial kick-off meeting in France in December 2013.

More information about both efforts, as well as other ISO/TC 197 Working Groups, can be found online in the January 2014 issue of the Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Safety Report (

New Measure for Promoting Dissemination of Fuel Cell Vehicles in Japan
by Karen Hall, FCHEA

On April 21, 2014, as part of the preparation toward full-fledged dissemination of fuel cell vehicles in 2015, Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) revised the General High Pressure Gas Safety Ordinance and other ordinances under the High Pressure Gas Safety Act, aiming to deal with the installation of a compressed hydrogen filling station and a compressed natural gas filling station at the same site, and expand the scope of steel types allowed to be used as a material of compressed hydrogen filling stations.

These revisions are expected to promote the development of hydrogen filling stations, including smoother installation of compressed hydrogen filling stations to existing compressed natural gas filling stations.

Details are available at

Joint Task Force on Liquid Hydrogen Being Formed
by Susan Bershad, National Fire Protection Association

NFPA is forming a new Liquefied Hydrogen Storage Systems Separation Distances Task Group in response to industry requests. This task group will evaluate the setback distances and mitigation methods for liquefied hydrogen storage. The task group has been formed with representation from the Industrial and Medical Gas Technical Committee and the Hydrogen Technologies Technical Committee and also with membership from outside of the TCs. The group will be tasked with evaluating the existing requirements, documenting a technical basis for these requirements, and proposing modifications if the analysis indicates that changes are justified. Even if the group does not determine a need to modify setback distances or other requirements, the work product will be code text (technical substantiation for existing requirements) in the form of public input. The proposed scope statement for the task group is as follows:

LONG TITLE: Joint NFPA Industrial and Medical Gas (IMG) Technical Committee and Hydrogen Technology Technical Committee (HYD) Task Group on Liquid Hydrogen Storage System Safety

SHORT TITLE: LH2 Separation Distances

Task Group Scope Statement: Scope: Validate or revise the existing prescriptive hydrogen separation distances in NFPA 55/2 for LH2 using new research, or other defensible substantiation material and investigate use of risk informed processes to produce actionable code proposals (if needed) as public input to change NFPA 55/2. Consider the effects of potential active, passive and redundant mitigations on the distances.

Carl Rivkin (NFPA 55 TC member), of NREL, will act as task group leader and will make available to the task group NREL technical resources as well as coordinating technical resources from other DOE laboratories. This effort is not expected to produce new code text (public comments) for the current code revision cycle. It is anticipated that this will be a multi-year effort. The goal is to start work before the joint NFPA 2/55 technical committee meeting in July, in order to take advantage of the joint meeting time.

Basic Considerations for Hydrogen Systems Safety Revision
by Karen Hall, FCHEA

A revised ISO DTR 15916: Basic considerations for the safety of hydrogen systems has been unanimously approved by ISO/TC 197 members. There were a few comments submitted for consideration. These comments are being resolved by Working Group 16. Upon successful resolution of the comments, this second edition of the International Technical Report will be published.

ISO TR 15916 provides guidelines for the use of hydrogen in its gaseous and liquid forms. It identifies the basic safety concerns and risks, and describes the properties of hydrogen that are relevant to safety. 

The document covers a broad range of topics relating to hydrogen safety; including Basic Properties, Materials/embrittlement, Combustion, and Cryogenic Issues.

This update includes learnings and risk-based information developed since 2004. 

Once published, the new edition will be available through ISO as well as many national standards bodies.