The Madison Fire Department says a rise in fires attributed to lithium-ion batteries is a growing cause of concern around the U.S. and is pushing for better education on the devices to try and prevent fires.
“A significant increase in the number of fires that’s due to more and more accessibility,” said fire marshal Bill Sullivan. “They are being used in more and more products every day, so just having more and more opportunities than for a mishap.”
Fire departments nationwide are seeing more of those mishaps turn into deadly fires. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, at least 19 people died in 2022 due to fires or overheating incidents traced back to E-Bikes, E-Scooters, and Hoverboards. Sullivan says because the product sales over the past two years have jumped, the department is now contending with more cheaply made devices holding volatile lithium-ion batteries, which are extremely challenging to put out once a fire starts.