Lithium-ion batteries are commonly found in various everyday items such as cordless tools, laptops, tablets, smartphones, electric vehicles (including cars, bikes, scooters and golf carts), and residential solar energy storage systems. Lithium batteries have the potential to overheat, short circuit or catch fire in a chain reaction from overcharging. This can be catastrophic as fire can escalate and spread quickly to surrounding homes and structures, threatening both property and lives.
Lithium batteries are known for their high energy density, which means they store a lot of energy in a small space. If a lithium battery catches fire, it can release this energy quickly, leading to a rapidly spreading fire that can be difficult to control.
When a lithium battery burns, it can release toxic fumes, including gases like carbon monoxide and hydrogen fluoride. Inhaling these fumes can be harmful to humans. This type of fire can also release harmful chemicals into the environment, potentially contaminating soil and water sources.
Another hazard with lithium-ion batteries is the phenomenon known as thermal runaway. This occurs when the battery generates heat at a rate faster than it can dissipate, leading to the release of gas or even an explosion. If one part of the battery overheats, causing nearby cells to heat up as well, this can lead to a chain reaction. Thermal runaway can be triggered by overcharging, overheating, or physical damage such as punctures to the battery.
Even after a lithium battery fire appears to be extinguished, there is a risk of re-ignition. The battery cells can reignite if not properly cooled and managed.
Traditional firefighting methods are less effective in extinguishing lithium battery fires. The electrolyte in lithium batteries is flammable, and water can actually make the situation worse by causing the release of hydrogen gas. Specialised fire-suppression methods and materials are often needed to control these fires including the Bridgehill range of fire blankets, one of the only solutions that can effectively handle the complexities of lithium battery fires.
Even a small fire from an e-bike, scooter or golf cart can cause tremendous damage. The Bridgehill Extreme Fire Blanket or Car Fire Blanket enables you to isolate and contain a battery fire in seconds. Bridgehill fire blankets contain flames, fumes and smoke – preventing the spread and reducing the potential for harm to people, property and the environment.
The Extreme fire blanket comes in three different sizes and is ideal for battery fires, e-scooters and bikes, workshops, restaurant kitchens, industrial settings, mining, marine, aviation and military applications. The Car Fire Blanket comes in a standard (single use) option, ideal for spaces with a high concentration of cars, such as parking garages, road tunnels, car ferries and car repair workshops and the Pro X (multiple use) variant, which is suitable for professional firefighters and emergency rescue organisations that may have to deal with multiple fires.
See the Bridgehill car fire blanket in action in this video
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