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Mother and Son Injured in East London House Fire Caused by E-Bike Battery

A severe house fire in East London, triggered by an e-bike battery, has left a mother and her adult son with serious injuries after they were forced to jump from the second-floor windows of their burning home. The incident occurred early Thursday morning on King Edward’s Road, Hackney.

The London Fire Brigade (LFB) reported that most of the three-storey home was destroyed in the blaze. The fire brigade’s response involved around six fire engines and approximately 40 firefighters, who battled the fire for nearly two hours before bringing it under control.

Assistant Commissioner Charlie Pugsley of the LFB emphasized the dangers of e-bike and e-scooter batteries and the importance of safe charging practices. He stated, “This was a devastating fire… A mother and son had no choice but to leap from windows because their escape route was blocked.” He advised against storing or charging e-bikes and e-scooters in hallways or escape routes and recommended keeping them outside if possible.

The incident in Hackney follows a recent fire in Harringay, North London, where a teenager suffered burns due to an e-bike battery pack catching fire in a flat. The LFB has reported a significant increase in fires related to e-bikes and e-scooters in London this year, with 150 e-bike fires and 28 e-scooter fires so far. This trend marks a 53% increase compared to the entire previous year.

LFB’s findings suggest that many of these fires involve second-hand vehicles, incorrect chargers, or modified bikes using online-purchased parts. Assistant Commissioner Pugsley urged caution when purchasing these vehicles and their components, especially as Christmas gifts. He stressed the importance of using the correct charger, not overcharging, and refraining from tampering with or modifying battery packs.

The recent survey by Electrical Safety First highlighted the risks associated with buying electronics from online marketplaces, where safety may be compromised by sellers prioritizing profits over consumer safety.

This incident has raised awareness about the rising fire risks associated with e-bikes and e-scooters, especially in urban environments. The London Fire Brigade continues to emphasize safety standards and awareness to prevent similar incidents in the future.

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