The Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) is supporting the development of a Professional Standard for technician to repair electric vehicles safely.
Sales of electric, plug-in hybrid and hybrid vehicles have seen a sharp increase of 21% since 2017, yet only around 3.5% of the UK’s 188,500 vehicle technicians are currently qualified with the skills to service and repair the high voltage components of this technology.
In the Government’s response to the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Committee report ‘Electric vehicles: driving the transition’, it calls for further development of electric vehicle skills to protect the safety of technicians.
The IMI will be host an Electric Vehicle Advisory Group meeting in February to develop a Professional Standard.
Steve Nash, Chief Executive at the IMI, said: “The response to the BEIS Committee report is confirmation that Government must work with businesses to help workers develop their skills when it comes to new vehicle technology. There must be more focus on the skills needed if the UK is to become a world-leader in the manufacturing and repairing of electrified vehicles.
“As the professional body for the automotive industry, the IMI is well placed to help Government understand the challenge of making sure that vehicle maintenance and repair is carried out in a professional and safe manner for both technicians and drivers. It’s essential that Government and business work better together to embrace the opportunities that come with new technology; however an appropriately skilled workforce must be regarded as a prerequisite to achieving those opportunities.
“By bringing together a committee of experts from across the motor industry to discuss, agree and develop Electric Vehicle Professional Standards, we can then provide the appropriate benchmarks and recognition for individuals to work towards, supported by the appropriate quality of training. In doing so we can create the expert, skilled workforce needed to support the next generation of vehicles.”