Faulty lithium battery sparks fire in Bergen

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A damaged lithium battery sparked a fire in a living room in Dumont, responders said.

The fire started in a house on the corner of East Madison Avenue and Depew Street shortly after 10:30 a.m. on Sunday March 13. Firefighters quickly knocked him down, containing him in one room.

No injuries were reported.

A large amount of energy – with a voltage up to three times higher than other types of batteries – creates enough heat in lithium batteries to cause fires or explosions.

A recent study attributed more than 400 fires over a five-year period to products powered by lithium batteries, according to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) list precautions to help prevent lithium battery fires:

  • Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for storing, using, charging, and maintaining lithium-ion batteries;
  • Never use counterfeits. Always replace batteries and chargers with components designed and approved specifically for your device;
  • Do not charge the device on flammable surfaces (bed, sofa, rug, pillow);
  • Remove devices and batteries from their charges once they are fully charged;
  • Store batteries in a cool, dry place. Keep them out of direct sunlight;
  • Regularly inspect your device and batteries for heat, swelling, noise or odor.

IMPORTANT: If your device smokes, a fire has already started. Turn it off, use tweezers or gloves to keep it away from the power source (don’t let it touch bare skin).

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