Hoverboard apartment fire cause
A recharging hoverboard is being blamed for an El Dorado Drive apartment fire that put seven people out of their home in Gardnerville on Thursday.
East Fork Fire Capt. Terry Taylor said he traced the cause of the 12:45 p.m. fire to a hoverboard that one of the children living in the apartment had plugged into charge.
Smoke from the burning device drove the four adults, two children and an infant from the apartment as the batteries began to explode.
Taylor said the family had to run past where the board was burning to escape the flames.
No one was injured in the fire, and Taylor said that most of their clothes survived the fire.
Firefighters responded to the two-alarm blaze and had the fire under control by 1:15 p.m. El Dorado Drive was closed as the fire was extinguished.
Southwest Gas, NV Energy and the American Red Cross were called to the scene.
Representatives of the American Red Cross met with the four adults and three children who were forced from their homes by an apartment fire in Gardnerville. Volunteers will stay in contact with the family as they get back to their feet. Donations may be made to the Red Cross by visiting http://www.redcross.org/nv/reno
According to the Douglas County Assessor’s Office, the apartments were built in 1980.
This is the second instance in four months where charging lithium batteries were involved in a Carson Valley fire.
A fire on Vicky Lane was traced to a lithium battery charger inside a home on Dec. 22.
Hoverboard manufacturers say the lithium batteries inside the device can catch fire if they’re overcharged.
According to the Fire Protection Research Foundation, lithium-ion batteries can sometimes experience thermal runaway, in which the cell releases its energy.
The cells have more energy than other types of batteries and they contain a flammable electrolyte
Temperatures inside a battery can reach up to 1,220 degrees beyond the melting point of some of its parts.
Many airlines have banned hoverboards as a fire hazard.