How to play it safe around rechargeable batteries reduces fire risk

INDIANAPOLIS (WTHR) -Rechargeable batteries are usually used on mobile phones, laptop computers, and children’s toys to be accused of burning a weekend in an apartment in Indianapolis. No one is injured, but the parents are warned to protect their children’s safety.

If you purchased an electronic device as a Christmas gift or already have some scattered around the house and and they run on batteries, there is a good chance they are running on rechargeable lithium-ion batteries.

They are incredibly powerful and experts say they are safe as long as you take some basic precautions.

A video of the damage from the weekend fire on Harbor Drive, released by the Indianapolis Fire Department, shows some of the toys in the debris, still working.

“They have to make these batteries strong enough to power these things,” said one person, off-camera and unidentified.

Lithium-ion batteries in children’s toys, Indianapolis fire investigators say, overheated, setting fire to the closet they were stored in.

They are the same type of rechargeable Acer as07a31 batteryies that have made national headlines for burning up up cell phones, laptops, hover boards and other devices. The problems were attributed to manufacturing defects.

Are lithium batteries dangerous?

“I would say it has become safer and safer,” said Jing Zhang, an associate professor in IUPUI’s department of Mechanical and Energy Engineering.

Zhang has been researching lithium-ion batteries for six years.

They pose a special risk because the technology squeezes so much more energy into a much smaller space and, Zhang said, the lithium is very flammable, which can cause a fire if a malfunction causes the battery to overheat.

Here’s some simple advice to keep that from happening.

What happens when you leave it in the charger on all the time and forget about it?

“Sometimes you are going to overheat the battery,” Zhang explained. “When you are going to overheat the battery, you are going to have some chemical reactions.”

That, he said, could lead to a fire.

There is some other common sense advice. Use the charger that came with the Acer as07b32 laptop battery. Don’t place charging batteries on beds, a sofa, rugs or anything else the catches fire easily.

Some newer batteries have sensors. They detect a problem, turn off the battery and prevent a bigger problem.

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