FDNYSmart Safety Tips for Devices with Lithium-Ion Batteries

Lithium-Ion batteries are used in various devices. These batteries are commonly used in cell phones, laptops, tablets, electric cars, and scooters. Lithium-ion batteries store a large amount of energy and can pose a threat if not treated properly. Like any product, a small number of these batteries are defective. They can overheat, catch fire, or explode.

Be #FDNYSmart if using any devices powered by lithium-ion batteries:

  • When purchasing devices, be sure that the equipment has the Underwriters Laboratories Mark. The UL mark shows that the product has been safety tested.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for charging and storage.
  • Do not charge a device under your pillow, on your bed, or on a couch.
  • Always use the manufacturer’s cord and power adapter made specifically for the device.
  • Keep batteries/devices at room temperature. Do not place in direct sunlight.
  • Store batteries away from anything flammable.
  • If a battery overheats or you notice an odor, change in shape/color, leaking, or odd noises from a device discontinue use immediately. If safe to do so, move the device away from anything that can catch fire and call 9-1-1.

Battery Disposal:

  • Putting lithium-ion batteries in the trash or recycling at home is illegal.
  • Recycle batteries by taking them to a battery recycling location or visiting nyc.gov/batteries for disposal instructions is always the best option.
  • Individually bag batteries or tape ends before disposing of them.

Report Improper Storage, Charging or Disposal:

You can report improper storage, charging, or disposal of lithium-ion batteries. Your report will be referred to the appropriate Fire Prevention Unit. FDNY will review the report and possibly inspect the location by the next business day. You will get a response within 12 hours of submitting your report.

Call 311 or 212-NEW-YORK (212-639-9675) to report the problem.

Download Safety Tips for Devices with Lithium-Ion Batteries Flyer:

FDNY Lithium Ion batteries ENGLISH (PDF)