The rise of E-Bikes may require careful assessment at work

You can’t fail to have noticed over the past few years how fast cyclists seem to be able to travel on the roads. No they haven’t all see the Tour De France and embarked on an impressive fitness drive to rival Tadej Pogacar or Tom Pidcock.

E-bikes, (and e-scooters) are becoming a more popular way for commuters to ditch the car and get to work in a more sustainable way, but what happens when they get to work and need to be stored or charged?

Modern e-bikes and scooters are powered by Lithium-ion batteries which pack a punch, generating huge amounts of energy from a small space. This however does come with increased fire risk and means that workplaces may need to consider how these modes of transport are stored and / or charged. In London in 2021 alone there were more than 100 fires caused by the rapid failure of these batteries, which not only cause fire, but can also explode ejecting burning material across a wide area.

Where e-bikes / scooters are allowed in your workplace, consider where they are stored. Indoors or outdoors. If indoors are they away from any combustible materials, not in an escape route, for example a corridor, and do you have a suitable heat detector in case of a fire. If outdoors are they protected from extremes of temperature (hot or cold) which can damage batteries.

Have you considered e-bikes / scooters in your fire risk assessment? This may need to be updated to take account of the risk posed by storing or charging e-bikes at work.

In order to keep up-to-date with changes to environment and H&S legislation, or for an internal audit of your current compliance, get in touch at