Utica First Insurance Company
3 min read
From public transportation to ride sharing, there are many options for how we travel between our homes and businesses. In urban areas that can be difficult to traverse for traditional vehicles, e-bikes have emerged as an ideal form of transportation.
Powered by battery and muscle, electric bikes provide a convenient alternative to public transportation, ride-share services or the comparatively high cost of conventional vehicle ownership. While they provide a convenient and feasible way to navigate city traffic, e-bikes can pose their own safety risk.
As their popularity increases among food service and other industries, there have been more reports of fires caused by their commonly used lithium-ion batteries. (For more information about why this happens, read this article by Bicycling.com)
If you plan to use e-bikes for your food service business or have employees who charge them at your business during the day, it’s important to research how to safely and responsibly operate and maintain one. Here are a number of tips e-bike users can undertake to reduce or avoid the potential risk of battery-related fires:
1. Never leave a charging battery unattended; avoid charging batteries overnight.
2. Do not overcharge batteries; unplug the battery immediately once charging is complete.
3. Do not charge batteries near combustible materials.
4. Avoid charging batteries in a confined space.
5. Never charge a battery that has been dropped or damaged.
6. Never make a modification to a battery.
7. Only use the charger and battery recommended by the manufacturer.
8. Charge the batteries on wire shelving units. In case of fire, this will allow the battery to be rolled away from structures and other materials.
9. Review and familiarize yourself with the charging instructions and operating manual.
10. Consider obtaining a battery management system (BMS), which protects the battery from overcharge, discharge and short circuits.
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