The San Francisco Examiner is reporting that Lyft has suspended its e-bike share program on the streets of San Francisco after two e-bikes caught fire in separate locations in the span of a week.
Jonathan Baxter, a spokesperson for the San Francisco Fire Department, said the department classified the incident as a “battery pack issue” and a “fire from battery pack.” The fire was deemed not suspicious by the San Francisco Fire Department although a Lyft spokesperson has told media outlets that vandalism has not been ruled out (by Lyft) as the cause of the fires.
This is the second time the Lyft e-bike fleet has been pulled from use in San Francisco. The first time was due to what Lyft claims was a front brake issue.
This is also not the first time a bike share company has battled battery fire issues. In March of this year, Citi Bike’s main service hub in New York experienced a fire caused by a charging battery.
TAKE SOME SIMPLE PRECAUTIONS
The companies who sell, rent and promote e-bikes have done riders a great disservice by not addressing the fire potential of their products. There are simple ways to reduce (but not eliminate) the damage done by an exploding battery.
TIPS RIDERS CAN USE TODAY TO REDUCE FIRE THREAT
1. Never leave a battery charging unattended. Day or night.
2. Don’t overcharge batteries.
3. Don’t charge batteries near combustible or explosive materials.
4. Never charge a battery that has been dropped, damaged or dinged.
5. Charge batteries on wire shelving with rollers. This allows an overheating or flaming battery to be quickly rolled away from structures.
OTHER STORES RELATED TO E-BIKE FIRES: