A charging hoverboard with a lithium battery overheated and started a fire inside a second-floor apartment in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, early Tuesday morning.
The Cape Girardeau Fire Department said crews responded to a report of a fire at a three-story apartment complex just before 5:00 Tuesday morning. Firefighters arriving at the scene saw no evidence of fire from the exterior of the building, but upon entry found a small fire, moderate, heat and a buildup of smoke in a bedroom of a second-floor unit.
“… The fire grew significantly, but lacked enough oxygen to reach flashover, and decayed on its own,” the Cape Girardeau Fire Department said in a statement. Firefighters extinguished the fire in the bedroom and ventilated the building. They then checked the attic for fire.
The fire department said it believes a hoverboard was charging from a wall outlet when it ignited, torching the mattress of a bed and other combustible objects before consuming the available oxygen in the room.
According to KFVS Channel 12 Cape Girardeau, the apartment was occupied by an adult and three children when the fire broke out. There is no mention of injuries by the fire department or local press.
An exploding lithium battery inside a hoverboard forced the evacuation of a Cape Girardeau mall in August.
According to various reports, someone was charging a hoverboard in an outlet in the mall’s central kiosk area when the lithium battery exploded. Witnesses reported hearing popping sounds and seeing the hoverboard bellowing smoke and flames.
Mall employees doused the hoverboard with dry-chemical fire extinguishers, but the fire reignited at least once after it was thought to be extinguished.
Hoverboards have gained notoriety in the past couple of years because of their rechargeable lithium-ion batteries, which have a propensity to overheat and explode. Hoverboards have been blamed for property damage across the country as well as personal injury and death.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) issued a second warning about LayZ Board hoverboards on Tuesday, Nov. 14, along with seven safety recalls for other hoverboard brands, all of which are made in China and are powered by rechargeable lithium batteries.