You are here

FDNY issues warning following spate of lithium-ion battery fires

Published April 25, 2022

NEW YORK (BRAIN) — Four fires sparked by lithium-ion batteries on lightweight electric vehicles Thursday prompted the FDNY to issue a statement afterward on its Twitter account about the dangers of improper charging and storing.

The tweet came after the FDNY extinguished the fires — three in Manhattan and one in Brooklyn — that injured a dozen people. FDNY said lithium-ion fires were the cause of four deaths last year.

"If using a lithium-ion battery, follow the manufacturer's instructions for charging and storage. Always use the manufacturer's cord and power adapter made specifically for the device. If a battery overheats, discontinue use immediately. See more at," the tweet read.

According to the Daily News, the three-alarm Brooklyn fire at a Kensington section home was reported about 4 a.m. It took more than 100 firefighters two hours to control the blaze. Seven people were treated for injuries.

A third-floor fire in a nine-story apartment building occurred when a lithium-ion electric motorbike battery exploded at about 7 a.m. One resident was treated for smoke inhalation. Later Thursday, firefighters responded to East Harlem when an e-bike caught fire, which spread to a parked vehicle. No injuries were reported. A fourth fire was reported at 6:30 a.m. on the fifth floor of a six-story building in Washington Heights where a lithium-ion battery on an e-bike exploded. Four people were hospitalized.

Earlier this month, an e-bike battery charging unattended at a longtime South Florida bike shop caught fire and destroyed the interior and much of the inventory, but no injuries were reported.

Lithium-ion batteries, especially those spec'd on low-cost e-bikes, can present a fire hazard and should never be charged unattended, e-bike experts say. Human Powered Solutions has published the Safe Lithium-Ion Battery Storage and Charging Procedures for the eBike Shop.

RELATED: Guest Editorial — Battery fires don't have to happen.

Join the Conversation