Narrow escape for Chinese man and daughter as charging e-scooter explodes at home

Bike that burst into flames was bought online only two weeks ago

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 02 August, 2018, 2:47pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 02 August, 2018, 6:13pm

An electric scooter exploded and caught fire in a flat in China’s capital, after it had been charging for seven hours, a local newspaper reported on Monday.

The scooter’s owner, identified only by her surname Zhao, had complained to a consumer watchdog and intended to take legal action, Beijing Morning Post reported.

The incident was filmed on Sunday afternoon by a security camera system Zhao had installed in her Beijing flat. A 22-second clip from the footage shows the scooter being charged in the living room, when there is a sudden loud bang. A man identified as Zhao’s husband, is startled by the noise and suddenly gets up from the sofa and unplugs the bike as smoke pours from the vehicle.

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Then he picks up his daughter and runs out of the room just before the scooter bursts into flames.

Security and property management staff extinguished the fire quickly and no one was injured.

Zhao was quoted as saying that she bought the scooter online two weeks earlier and had charged it just once before the accident happened. She said the scooter had been charging for seven hours before it exploded. The person she bought it from online had told her it needed to be charged for six to 12 hours.

She called the scooter’s seller right after the incident and was referred to Shengte, a company in Zhejiang province that was supposedly the manufacturer of the scooter. However, Shengte said the company had not yet confirmed if it was one of their scooters.

The seller of the scooter claimed it was bought from a Shengte online shop which was advertised on the company’s official website.

The company was still investigating to see if it was the manufacturer who was responsible, whether it was down to the person who sold it online, or whether it was Zhao’s improper use that led to the explosion, the newspaper reported.

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He said an agent from the firm’s Beijing branch had already visited Zhao’s flat.

Zhao said a man who claimed to be a friend of the company’s spokesperson had visited her on Tuesday but left without giving her any response, the report said.

Zhao filed her complaint with the consumers’ committee in Zhejiang province, where Shengte is based.