E-scooter sparks bin lorry fire

Firefighters are urging residents to dispose of lithium-ion batteries safely following a recent fire caused by an electric scooter that had been thrown in a household bin.

Crews responded to the fire in Crawley on Wednesday (24 May) which started in the back of a refuse collection lorry.

The e-scooter’s lithium-ion battery ignited inside the refuse lorry after having been thrown away in a household waste bin.

Upon arrival the crews extinguished the fire and left the electric scooter submerged in water at Crawley recycling centre to prevent it reigniting.

Christopher Barker, Watch Manager at Crawley Fire Station, said: “All types of batteries, including lithium-ion batteries, pose a serious risk when thrown away in general waste or recycling bins, as this incident clearly shows.

“Never put batteries in your household bins. They can become damaged from crushing during the collection and sorting process, causing paper, plastics, and other materials to catch alight.

“Large lithium-ion batteries such as those from e-scooters can be taken to your nearest recycling centre where staff on site will be able to advise on where to dispose of them.

“Many shops and supermarkets have designated collection points where you can recycle small batteries, or alternatively you can take them to your local recycling centre.

“Our Blue Watch crew have been visiting local waste disposal sites to educate people on the safe disposal of items containing lithium-ion batteries.”