No one injured but home now a write-off
A house fire in Maryland, USA was caused by a build-it-yourself e-bike kit that contained numerous lithium ion batteries.
25 year old Robert Floto was assembling the electric bike in a bedroom when two of the battery terminals accidentally made contact with each other which caused an instant explosion that, in turn, caused the other adjacent lithium batteries to similarly catch fire and explode.
Mr Floto escaped injury and did even manage to get the burning bike out of the house via a back door (the bedroom was on the ground floor). Mr Floto and his father tried to extinguish the fire but had no joy and the fire didn’t take long to spread into and throughout the house.
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The emergency services had been called. It eventually took sixty firefighters almost an hour to get the flames under control.
“Robert Floto was able to push the bike out the rear door to the exterior. Floto and his father attempted to extinguish the fire with multiple fire extinguishers; however the fire quickly spread throughout the room and into the house. Investigators consider the home a total loss,” investigators said.
Damage is estimated as around $225,000 ($175,000 for the building itself and a further $50,000 for its contents). A team of investigating assessors have stated that the house is a total write-off.