E-bike battery explosion sparks fire at Dubai pharmacy: Quick action by residents averts major incident

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Fire breaks out at Life Pharmacy in Business Bay

A battery from an electric bike (e-bike) unexpectedly caught fire while being charged outside Life Pharmacy in Business Bay, Dubai.

This incident, which took place on 10th March 2024, alarmed local residents and bystanders who witnessed the fire rapidly escalate.

According to a cafeteria worker present at the scene: “There were a few loud bangs and the next thing you see is fire licking the glass exterior of the pharmacy.”

The quick thinking and decisive actions of passersby were crucial in controlling the situation.

Eyewitnesses and locals douse flames

Those nearby played a key role in managing the fire before it could spread further.

The same cafeteria worker detailed their response: “We hastily removed the e-bike else it would have gutted.”

A security guard at Escape Tower, where the pharmacy is located, confirmed that the fire was caused by the battery explosion.

The incident occurred at 1.30 pm and was swiftly brought under control, demonstrating the alertness and cooperative spirit of the local community in dealing with such emergencies.

Understanding the risks of e-bike batteries

While e-bikes and e-scooters are generally regarded as safe, incidents like this highlight the potential risks associated with faulty batteries and related hardware, including chargers.

The cause of e-bike fires can be traced back to both chemical and practical factors.

A thermal runaway phenomenon in lithium-ion cells can lead to an increase in battery cell temperature and pressure, producing flammable gas.

If this gas ignites due to the battery’s high temperature, it can result in a fast-spreading fire that is difficult to extinguish and releases harmful fumes.

IFSJ Comment

The prompt and effective response by Dubai residents to the e-bike battery explosion at Life Pharmacy in Business Bay serves as a reminder of the community’s role in emergency situations.

This incident emphasises the need for awareness and vigilance among users and manufacturers regarding the potential hazards of these increasingly popular modes of transportation.

Furthermore, it underscores the importance of proper maintenance and regular checks of e-bike and e-scooter batteries to prevent such occurrences.

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