NOTE: This was written for broadcast and reflects the thoughts of Neal Barton.

Texas and Florida have a lot in common, mainly hurricanes. We learned more about EV cars and salt water (thanks, Ian). They don’t mix. This, according to Florida Chief Financial Officer and Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis as reported by the publication “Florida Politics.” In the wake of Hurricane Ian, Patronis is expressing new concern over electric vehicles.

He penned a letter to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration sounding alarms on the dangerous mix of lithium batteries and storm surge. Patronis, whose duties include state Fire Marshal, said the administration needs to assess fire risks associated with saltwater on electric vehicles.

In the meantime, he said fire teams need more support to deal with an “inevitable” increase in fires associated with electric-powered automobiles. He sent a copy of the letter to Rep. Frank Pallone, Chair of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

The storm delivered the greatest damage to the north in Lee County, but Collier County withstood major flooding as more than six feet of storm surge flooded populated areas with seawater from the Gulf of Mexico.

One major problem Patronis described was that even after lithium battery fires were extinguished, continued exposure to saltwater caused new ignitions. Oh, boy.

That’s my point of view what’s yours ? You can email me at or Facebook me at KETK Neal Barton.