House fire involving lithium ion polymer battery

Energy type: 
Electricity
 
Event summary: 
The Fire Service notified Energy Safety of a house fire involving a new lithium ion polymer battery supplied with a remote control model aircraft which was being charged for the first time. The victim was treated for smoke inhalation by ambulance crew, but was not transported to hospital. There was fire damage to the lounge cabinet shelving and wall covering.

 
Accident ID: 
161209-01
 
Accident date: 
3 December 2016
 
Site: 
Domestic
 
Environment: 
Building
 
Voltage: 
1
 
Equipment: 
Lithium Polymer Ion (LiPo)
 
Accident type: 
Fire
 
Casualty: 
Non-fatality
 
Injury: 
Asphyxiation
 
Property damage level: 
Restricted to the room containing the equipment
 
Outcome of investigation: 

The fire occurred nine days before Energy Safety was notified so the necessary examination of the remains of the battery and charger involved could therefore not be undertaken. It could not be determined if the new lithium ion battery involved was faulty, or whether it had been incorrectly connected to an incorrect charger. Although the model details of the charger and batteries were recorded by the attending fire officer, their compatibility could not be determined. A consequential audit of the compliance documentation for the model aircraft will be initiated on the seller.