LIithium batteries in electric vehicles risk causing fires on container ships, insurer warns
Insurer Allianz has sounded the alarm over the risk of car battery fires on container ships
LIithium batteries in electric vehicles risk causing fires on container ships, an insurer has warned.
Allianz said the fire containment systems in older ships are not suited to cope with chemical fires or carry lithium batteries which, although usually safe, can heat up and combust.
And the open plan design of these vessels tends to lead to fires spreading much faster. The report from the German multinational financial services company said: ‘Lithium batteries are an emerging risk for both container ships and car carriers, which are transporting growing numbers of electric vehicles, given existing counter-measure systems may not respond effectively in the event of a blaze.’
The warnings from the insurer came only two months after the Felicity Ace caught fire and sank into the Atlantic in March.
Porsches and Bentleys were among the 4,000 Volkswagen vehicles on board.
Five people died on the Maersk Honam in 2018 after its chemically flammable material caught fire beyond the control of the ship’s carbon dioxide fire suppression system.