Fires caused by e-bikes up 74.5% this year

Zhu Yuting
Authorities report significant increase in fires caused by e-bikes with two deaths, 22 injuries and property losses of 2.82 million yuan in the first five months of 2021.
Zhu Yuting

The number of fires in the city caused by e-bikes had increased significantly by May 31, an increased of 74.5 percent compared with 2020, local authorities said on Monday.

There were 267 e-bike fires in the city, resulting in two deaths, 22 injuries and property losses of 2.82 million yuan (US$440,000). That was 15 more people injured compared with last year and a 120.6 percent increase in property losses, according to Tan Xun, chief engineer of the fire and rescue authorities.

He said typical e-bike cases related to electrical faults. 

In one case, two residents died while another was injured after a fire triggered by charging an e-bike at the entrance to a house in a village in the Pudong New Area on May 16.

Tan said the authorities will strengthen supervision on manufacturers, take more active steps to prevent e-bike charging in residential complexes and trace the cause of every e-bike fire, especially those that cause injuries.

There were 7,076 fires in Shanghai this year, with 26 deaths and 51 people injured. Losses amounted to around 63.6 million yuan, said Li Weimin, head of the fire and rescue authorities. The number of fires had increased significantly, by 131.7 percent, compared with previous years.

Kitchen fires, electrical faults and smoking were the most common causes, authorities said.

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