With the world going all electric, it was only a matter of time this would cause issues in the long run.

By now you've seen on the news about electric vehicles catching fire due to the batteries inside them. Does this mean it's time to ban batteries all together?

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Below is an example on how these batteries are regulated:

Back in February, Massachusetts cities like Pittsfield implemented new zoning changes on how battery systems are stored in residential and commercial areas. According to The Berkshire Eagle, battery systems that hold between 30 kilowatt hours and 10 megawatt hours of energy are considered small scale.

These are the kinds of systems that can be used at schools, small businesses or multifamily buildings as these BESS units have to receive a special permit from the community development board and can only be located in a downtown creative district or Pittsfield's commercial or business district. Of course anything with the ability to hold more than 10 megawatt hours is considered a commercial scale.

Bloomberg via Getty Images
Bloomberg via Getty Images
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What are the regulations on lithium ion batteries?

According to the FAA, Lithium batteries, which power everyday devices, can catch fire if damaged or if battery terminals are short-circuited.

Devices containing lithium metal batteries or lithium ion batteries, including but not limited to smartphones, tablets, cameras and laptops, should be kept in carry-on baggage. If these devices are packed in checked baggage, they should be turned completely off, protected from accidental activation and packed so they are protected from damage. Requirements vary based on the type of device and size of battery needed.

Lithium-Ion Battery Safety Tips

  • Purchase and use devices that are listed by a qualified testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL)
  • Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions
  • Only use the battery and charging cord that is designed for the device
  • Do not charge a device under your pillow, on your bed, or on a couch
  • Plug the charger directly into a wall outlet, not a power strip or extension cord
  • Do not keep charging the device or device battery after it is fully charged
  • Keep batteries at room temperature when possible
  • Do not charge them at temperatures below 32°F (0°C) or above 105°F (40°C).
  • Do not leave them in a hot car, in direct sunlight, or in freezing temperatures
  • Store batteries away from anything that can catch fire
  • Store scooters and e-bikes outdoors if possible. If you must store them indoors, keep them away from doors, windows, and stairways
  • Have working smoke alarms and a home escape plan that includes two ways out

Will lithium batteries ever be banned in the Baystate?

As of right now there's no actual ban in place for these batteries but they are however illegal to throw away in the trash with the risks they pose and must be properly recycled.

Tips To Avoid Lithium-ion Battery Fires

At least 18 people were killed in lithium-ion battery fires in 2023 in New York. Officials say these tips will help you avoid a similar fire.

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