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Wednesday, 29 January 2014 15:25

Junk Drawer Fire Hazard

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9 volt battery fire 9 volt battery fire

Do you have a junk drawer in your home?  Like most people you probably do.  If you have loose batteries stored in the drawer, you have a potential fire hazard.  New Hampshire's Fire Marshall is warning people after a home burned down due to items in a junk drawer.  The items responsible include a 9 volt battery, paper clips, post it notes and other items stored in the drawer.  The prongs of a 9 volt battery apparently came in contact with metal and paper.  Once the metal came in contact, the paper acted as fuel and started the fire.  


Londonderry Fire Chief Mac Caffrie stated “The potential is there, there are a lot of things in a normal junk drawer that do burn, and apparently the ignition source was a 9 volt battery.”    A 9 volt battery is a fire hazard because the positive and negative posts are on top, right next to one another. If this comes in contact with anything metal (pens, paper clips, etc.) it will spark, and if there is a fuel for this spark you will have a fire.


Storing batteries together in a plastic bag can also be a hazard.  When you dispose of this type of battery make sure it is safely wrapped in electrical tape or something to keep it separated from anything else that may come in contact with it.  I have noticed the batteries are now being sold with the plastic cap attached to the posts to prevent any contact.   Now is a good time to clean out your junk drawer to ensure you do not have a fire hazard.  


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