KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) — As automakers keep electrifying their vehicles, first responders from across the Midwest gathered at Western Michigan University on Wednesday to learn how to properly handle EVs in an emergency.

The event was part of General Motors’s EV First Responder Training program, partnered with On-Star and the Illinois Fire Service Institute.

Representatives from hundreds of police, fire and EMS departments across the region were in various sessions talking about concerns and misconceptions about EVs, as their popularity continues to rise.

“What we aim to show in this training is that a lot of those concerns have been addressed in the development, testing, validation, engineering processes that we’ve committed to in-house,” Joe McLaine, a staff engineer for General Motors, said. “But we’ve also committed to making documentation and reference materials available for their education and their awareness when interacting with our product.”

“The training guides that we provide now — ‘You’re going up on a car, go to the ERGs’ — we’re keeping those updated. If you want to recycle the battery, we have that kind of information available. So things are moving along and we are trying to keep everybody updated as much as we can,” Lance Turner, a technical engineer for General Motors, said.

More information can be found online.