Woman and three children in hospital as e-bike causes flat fire in Erith
A woman and three children have been taken to hospital after a flat fire in Erith.
The fire broke out in Arthur Street just before 11pm on January 27.
Four fire engines and around 25 firefighters tackled the blaze.
Half of the flat on the third floor was damaged by the fire.
The woman and three children left the flat before firefighters arrived.
They were treated for smoke inhalation and taken to hospital by London Ambulance Service crews.
The fire is believed to have been caused by a fault in an e-bike lithium battery.
The incident was under control by 12.02am.
Fire crews from Erith, Bexley, and Plumstead stations were called to the scene.
A spokesperson for London Fire Brigade said: “It’s incredibly concerning we are continuing to see a rise in incidents involving e-bikes and e-scooters.
“When these batteries and chargers fail, they do so with ferocity and because the fires develop so rapidly the situation can quickly become incredibly serious.
“Lithium-ion batteries are susceptible to failure if incorrect chargers are used and there is a significant risk posed by e-scooters which have been converted.
"We are predominantly seeing fires in ones which have been purchased from online marketplaces and batteries which have been sourced on the internet, which may not meet the correct safety standards.
“Our advice is to try and store and charge these items in a safe location if possible, such as in a shed or garage, and if they have to be stored inside, make sure there is smoke detection fitted and your means of escape is not obstructed.
“However we know this won’t be possible for everyone, so if you are charging them indoors, please follow our advice on safe charging and ensure everyone in your home knows what to do in the event of a fire.
“We would also suggest people try not to charge them when they are asleep, so that if there is an issue they can react quickly.”
The full statement from London Fire Brigade said: “Firefighters are issuing another warning e-bike safety warning after a flat fire on Arthur Street in Erith.
“Half of a flat on the third floor of a seven-storey block of flats was damaged by fire.
"A woman and three children left the flat before firefighters arrived.
“They were taken to hospital by London Ambulance Service crews suffering from smoke inhalation.
“The fire is believed to have been caused by a fault in an e-bike lithium battery.
“The Brigade was called at 2251 and the fire was under control by 0002. Four fire engines and around 25 firefighters from Erith, Bexley, and Plumstead fire stations attended the scene.”