EV Charging Risks for Landlords and Bodies Corporate

May 2023

Read Time: 2 Minutes

Risks for Landlords and Bodies Corporate with EV Charging

Electric vehicle fires have hit the news lately, with a Tesla catching fire on Auckland's Harbour Bridge and reports of e-bikes catching fire while charging. With electric cars, scooters, e-bikes and other devices becoming increasingly popular, how can landlords mitigate the risks?

What is Causing EV Fires?

Faulty lithium-ion batteries have been found to be to blame for a recent spate of fires involving e-bikes and other electric vehicles. Lithium-ion batteries are also used for smartphones, laptops and vapes among many other devices.

In general, the batteries are considered safe but a small percentage of defective batteries have overheated, catching fire and sometimes exploding.

How Can Tenants and Landlords Decrease the Risk of Battery Fires?

Tenants should be advised to store and charge batteries on fire-resistant surfaces, only charge when occupants are at home, and never leave batteries charging for too long.

It's important that tenants only use the battery and charger that came with their vehicle or device and never use a battery that is showing signs of damage, such as swelling or overheating.

Safe disposal of lithium-ion batteries should also be prioritised.

Battery Charging in Body Corporate Environments

Bodies corporate should assess whether their building's electrical capacity can handle EV charging stations, identify the most suitable place for stations and establish guidelines for their use. Well-maintained charging stations are preferable to residents charging vehicles in their own homes.

Appropriate fire protection should be in place including access to hydrants, hose reels and extinguishers, and stations should be located away from flammable liquids.

Electric Vehicle Charging Advice

Worksafe NZ advises electric vehicle owners:

  • Only use electric vehicle charging adapters supplied by the vehicle manufacturer or an electric vehicle supply equipment manufacturer
  • Refrain from using any household adapter (such as a double plug or power board) between the electric vehicle supply equipment and the electricity socket
  • Never use damaged equipment and have faulty equipment checked by the manufacturer.
For additional advice, contact Crockers’ helpful Community Living experts at  09 968 3311 or email  bc@crockers.co.nz alternatively you can contact the Property Management team at pm@crockers.co.nz or call for a chat at 09 623 5952. 


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