"Hoverboard" blows up in England doing £25,000 damage to a home
A grandpa buys three "hoverboards" for his grandchildren for Christmas. He has them charging in his kitchen, when one of them ignites and explodes with a huge explosion.
Reading the article above, this is a simple case of what happens with certain kinds of lithium-ion batteries. In certain circumstances, like being overcharged, they'll explode dramatically. Clearly what happened this time.
Lesson: Be on the lookout for cheap batteries ..
To check they all worked, Mr Hodkinson plugged one in to charge in the kitchen. He said: ‘Elaine and I were in the living room when we heard a massive swoosh. Through a glass door to the kitchen we could see a bright yellow glow of flames.’
Mr Hodkinson, 44, opened the door to be met with flames leaping from the battery pack of the hoverboard. He said: ‘For a moment I froze – there was an instinct to try and put the flames out. But then I heard the hoverboard fizzing in the flames. It sounded like a firework.
‘Thankfully I decided to close the door and call the fire brigade because within seconds there was a massive bang and the hoverboard exploded. It was terrifying – like a mini bomb going off. Neighbours heard it three houses away.
What is a "hoverboard"?
I thought it was that thing that Marty flew on in Back To the Future ?
Looking a the pictures it looks like something to stand and roll on, not hover..
Oh, and looking at the kitchen, I think his toast is ready...:-)
These "hoverboards" are simple mini-Segways without a steering bar but a pivot in the platform. There is no hovering at all involved with these products. It might be interesting to sue these guys in a US court for misleading naming and advertising...
Talking of battery-induced fires: In Fürth / Odenwald here in Germany a warehouse storing and working on LiPo batteries burst into flames on October 24 after unsuspecting fire fighters tried to douse a battery fire with water, which is an absolute no-go and produces quite the contrary result, much like trying to extinguish burning magnesium with water... In the end they quenched it with foam. Damages of at least 300 000 € were the consequence, and more bad press for electric mobility :-(
It is absolutely necessary that the local fire department knows of such specialities as masses of LiPo batteries stored at a certain location.
What I am not so sure about is if I should also inform our local fire department of my LiFePO4 Thunder in the Garage and LiPo vR one sitting on our outside parking lot at night?
The LiFePO4's are not prone to thermal runaway and are quite safe.
My understanding is that the thermal runaway fires occur with the other chemistry types if a cell gets over-discharged, then it is charged. The battery management boards are supposed to prevent this from happening.
Also, since there is no lithium metal in a lithium-ion battery, and the quantity of combustible liquid electrolyte is small, then water, still work in dowsing fires.
Because of these manufacturer defects that got through the net, now it's halfway impossible to buy these things cuz the seller can't ship it to me. Carrier companies won't dare touch them