Plea to public to dispose of batteries properly after recent fires at waste centres and bin trucks

  • Video report by Claire Hannah.

There is a plea from our fires services to properly dispose of batteries after recent fires at waste centres and in bin trucks.

Lithium ion batteries are found in mobile phones, e-cigarettes and other gadgets. They can explode if they get damaged. 

Not disposing of them properly is putting staff at waste centres at risk.

It is estimated in the UK last year, that batteries caused more than 260 fires at waste sites.

  • This site is where household rubbish from across Greater Manchester comes to be recycled, more than a million tons every year.

Anna Bell from Suez Recycling says a multitude of problems can occur when batteries are not properly disposed of.

When rubbish goes into the back of a bin truck it is crushed, which can pierce the batteries and make them unstable, leading to fires.

A fire at a landfill in Pilsworth earlier this year took seven days to bring under control and batteries have been identified as one possible cause.

The fire at Pilsworth earlier this year. Credit: GMFRS

The overwhelming message from Suez and the fire service is to get rid of batteries responsibly, at best your bin collection could be delayed, at worst, you could be risking somebody's life.