Mayor Adams launches plan to combat e-bike battery fires

Mayor Eric Adams on Monday unveiled a new plan to crack down on unregulated lithium-ion e-bike batteries and protect New Yorkers from the fires they have been causing. 

Fires caused by lithium-ion batteries have become a growing problem across the city. According to the FDNY, lithium-ion batteries have caused 45 fires in 2023 alone, killing three people and injuring 46.

"They are not just regular fires, they are basically explosions," Adams said at the Monday press conference. "And they spread so rapidly, it's more than just water to put them out, it's a very complicated fire."

Adams' new plan, called "Charge Safe, Ride Safe" aims to promote and incentivize safe battery use, offering secure e-bike charging and storage stations across the city. It will also seek to increase education and outreach to electric micro-mobility users, advocate for additional federal device regulation, and expand enforcement against high-risk situations. 

Adams also signed a package of bills from the New York City Council, including a ban on the sale, lease or rental of e-bike and e-scooter batteries that fail to meet industry safety standards. 

RELATED: Fire at e-bike shop in Queens

The FDNY will also launch a safety education campaign for e-bike and e-scooter delivery workers and provide an annual report on fires connected to lithium-ion batteries.

"Fires caused by e-bikes and the lithium-ion batteries they rely on have increased dramatically in our city, with deadly consequences for citizens and first responders," said FDNY Commissioner Laura Kavanagh. "It is a problem we are tackling aggressively with our partners in city, state, and federal government."