London firefighters express support for TFL’s ban on private electric scooters

The TfL ban is due to go into effect on Monday, December 13, following an incident in which an electric scooter caught fire in a busy metro in November.

The electric scooter took on the light as the train pulled to a stop at Parsons Green tube station.

No one was seriously injured in the incident, but a passenger suffered smoke inhalation, which brought the use of electric scooters on London transport to urgent TfL review.

The ban was announced on Thursday December 9 where TfL revealed it would go into effect on Monday December 13.

Under the new rules, customers with an electric scooter or electric unicycle will not be allowed to enter the premises of a TfL network or to travel on a metro, bus, metro, TfL train. , a tram or DLR service.

The Metropolitan Police Department launched a crackdown on the illegal use of electric scooters on public roads days earlier, with ScotRail also considering a similar ban.

The brigade backed the ban after firefighters witnessed more than 50 fires involving e-scooters and e-bikes this year, which is double the total amount seen in 2020.

He already issued an urgent safety warning earlier this year amid concerns over an increase in fires involving e-bikes and e-scooters in recent months.

A recent case involved firefighters witnessing a fire caused by an electric bicycle on loan against a hallway radiator catching light.

The majority of these fires have taken place in homes, the Brigade recognizes that there may be an increase in external cases as people resume their work and travel habits.

The fires were “particularly fierce and fierce enough to pose an immediate danger to residents,” according to fire investigators.

When these bikes and scooters are stored in common areas and hallways, they also prevent people from safely escaping a fire.

The brigade also said it was concerned about faulty third-party batteries.

Indeed, many incidents that firefighters have witnessed concern batteries coming from the Internet and, therefore, not meeting the necessary safety standards.

The brigade’s deputy commissioner for fire safety, Paul Jennings, said: “We are increasingly concerned about the safety of electric scooters and e-bikes due to the number of fires we see involving them, we support therefore fully banning TfL of e-scooters in public transport.

“Fires are dangerous and terrifying wherever they occur, but a fire in the transportation system has the potential to become very serious very quickly and involve hundreds of people, especially on trains where evacuation can occur. be difficult, so anything that can be done to mitigate that risk is a positive step.

“We also have concerns about people attempting to fight these fires on their own, believing that the vapors given off are only vapor, when they actually contain noxious and poisonous gases.

“You should never try to fight a fire yourself. Leave it to the professionals. As soon as you notice a fire on your property, go outside, stay outside, close the door behind you and call 999. ”

Top firefighter safety tips for electric scooters and e-bikes

The London Fire Brigade presented their top safety tips for using e-scooters and e-bikes:

• Always use the correct charger for the product and purchase an official one from a reputable seller.
• Batteries may heat up during use and it is advisable to allow them to cool before attempting to recharge them as they may be more susceptible to failure.
• Batteries should always be charged on hard, level surfaces where heat can dissipate.
• Batteries can also present a risk if they have been damaged, so try to ensure that they are not spilled during use or when transported as spare parts as this can increase the risk of damaging cells. . They should also never be exposed to extreme temperatures.
• You should always make sure to unplug your charger after it has finished charging. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when charging and we recommend that you do not leave it unattended or while people are sleeping.
• Make sure that smoke detectors are installed in areas where e-bikes or electric scooters are charged and make sure they are tested regularly.
• Never block your emergency exit with anything, including bicycles and scooters. Store them somewhere away from a main route and make sure you and your family have an escape plan in place in the event of a fire.

Wiley C. Thompson