The brand new Corbett 14 electric scooter’s detachable battery exploded while put on charge in the state of Andhra Pradesh
In another fatal incident, a man was killed and three were injured in a battery explosion of an electric scooter. Took place in Suryaraopet in the city of Vijaywada city in Andhra Pradesh, the incident saw a newly bought Corbett 14 e-scooter had its detachable battery pack explode into fumes causing a part of the house to burn down when it was put on charge.
The incident happened only a few days after another EV fire, which took the life of an 80-year-old in the neighbouring state of Telangana – one of the many repeated incidents over the last couple of weeks across various Indian states involving brands like Ola Electric, Okinawa and Pure EV. Most of them were due to the phenomenon of thermal runaway in the excessive summer heat.
The man named Kotakonda Siva Kumar is said to have suffocated by the dense fumes and smoke before perishing while his K Harathi and two children are admitted to a local hospital with 30 per cent burns. This is the first such incident in Vijayawada and according to Suryaraopet police, Siva Kumar, a DTP operator, had bought the Corbett 14 this past Friday.
They explained that Siva Kumar removed the battery from the scooter and kept it in the front room on a table for charging while the family slept in the room behind it. At around 3 am, the battery exploded and the electrical wiring caught fire leading to the generation of dense fumes. The wife of Siva Kumar is in a critical condition and the children are stable.
The neighbours who saw the smoke broke the doors open of Siva Kumar’s house and pulled out the trapped family. The electric vehicle start-ups are coming under increased pressure with such explosions and frequent fires while transporting their electric scooters as the inferior battery technology and other potential failures are brought to the spotlight.
This has led to the central government step in with a draft battery swapping policy for EVs while the think tank Niti Aayog warned the makers of high consequences when such incidents occur as recalls and penalties are part of the agenda.