Duke Energy Battery Energy Storage System Safety
Know the risks. Although similar to conventional substations, battery energy storage system (BESS) facilities have a risk of explosion and stranded energy, presenting unique challenges to fire service agencies.
If you are called to an incident involving a Duke Energy BESS facility, always approach with caution. Use a standoff distance of at least 100 feet for all Duke Energy BESS facilities. Do NOT proceed beyond the fenceline of any BESS facility without guidance from a qualified on-site facility subject-matter expert, or SME. The SME should understand the system configuration and battery chemistry under adverse conditions.
Review data to guide operational decisions. The fire alarm/protective system annunciator and battery management system provide the best sources of data.
Consider the potential for a deflagration to occur. Do not be complacent if there is smoke but fire is not showing. This can, in fact, be a more dangerous situation, as it may indicate the development of an explosive environment.