Off the street, e-bikes and electric scooters take a toll in injuries and lives.
Two Three New Yorkers died and 60 63 were injured — including 18 firefighters —
in 55 56 blazes sparked by the lithium-ion batteries that power the zippy
two-wheel rides used by delivery workers and other people.
In the previous year, the lithium-ion batteries caused fewer than half as many fires — 22 blazes that injured 13 people, including four firefighters.
“Before we even knew, the fire was already out of control,” said Octavia Thomas, 26, who escaped the blaze from her first-floor apartment.
But the Fire Department already sees faulty after-market batteries as a problem, Flynn told the Daily News.
Replacements, and not the batteries that originally come with scooters, are usually the ones to catch fire, he explained. “The most important thing to do is to stick with the manufacturer’s recommended batteries,” Flynn said.
Another safety tip: “Never leave the battery charging unattended,” Flynn said. “A lot of people charge them overnight and go to sleep, but we recommend you don’t do that.”
Overcharging and charging batteries in confined spaces are also a bad idea.
“People also tend to charge the batteries in the doorway of their homes, and that causes a substantial safety hazard,” Flynn said. A fire in a doorway can block escape routes, he explained.