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ECA backs Bill to tackle Li-Ion battery fires

ECA is backing a campaign led by industry charity Electrical Safety First to stop the alarming rise in deaths and injuries resulting from fires and explosions caused by e-scooter and e-bike batteries.  

Fires caused by lithium-ion batteries in e-scooters and e-bikes have multiplied fourfold since 2020, resulting in deaths, hospitalisations, homelessness, and staggering financial losses. 

Over 190 people have been injured, and eight lives lost due to this concerning trend. The UK is now facing a disturbing projection of nearly one e-bike or e-scooter fire per day this year, a significant leap from just over one per week in 2020. 

This issue is widespread across the UK- in the last 18 months there have been battery fires in over 100 UK parliamentary constituencies. 

ESF's Bill proposes solutions to these challenges, including:

  • Clause 1: Safety Assurance - This clause mandates a third-party safety assessment, conducted by a government-approved body, for all e-bikes, e-scooters, and their lithium-ion batteries before they enter the UK market. This process mirrors safety measures in place for other high-risk products like fireworks and heavy machinery.
  • Clause 2: Responsible Disposal - This clause requires the Government to make regulations ensuring the safe disposal of lithium batteries once their lifecycle ends.
  • Clause 3: Comprehensive Fire Safety - This clause assigns the Government the responsibility of comprehensively addressing fire-related concerns. This involves enhancing safe usage, charging, and storage practices for these devices. It includes setting standards for conversion kits and charging systems, and consideration for a temporary ban on the sale of universal chargers that heighten fire risks.

Additional clauses in the Bill can be read here. 

ECA Members are encouraged to express their support for the Bill - learn how you can do so here.

Last updated 15 November 23