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NEW YORK – Fire investigators in New York City said that a fire in a Brooklyn apartment building was caused by two e-bikes that were charging.

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In a news release on Thursday, the New York City Fire Department said that it was initially called to the fire Saturday morning. When firefighters got to the 12th floor of the building, they raced to the apartment where people were believed to be trapped.

“Ten feet into the apartment, we saw two e-bikes on fire,” firefighter Tyrell Frazier told WABC.

Charging e-bikes blamed for apartment fire

The FDNY Fire Marshal ruled the charging batteries started the fire.

Firefighters continued into the apartment, where they found “two semiconscious individuals who were unable to remove themselves,” fire officials said in the news release.

“I got about 15 feet in when I ran into Firefighter Frazier who was coming out with the first victim. I proceeded to the back bedroom where I was able to locate and remove the second victim from the apartment,” firefighter Thomas Butler said.

In the news release, the FDNY said fire marshals determined the charging e-bikes/e-scooters had sparked the fire.

The two people rescued from the fire, aged 18 and 25, were taken to a hospital where one was listed in critical condition and the other suffered a life-threatening injury, WABC reported.

The FDNY offered these tips to prevent fires when using devices with lithium-ion batteries:

· Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for charging and storage.

· Do not charge a device under your pillow, on your bed, or on your couch.

· Always use the manufacturer’s cord and power adapter made specifically for the device.

· Keep batteries and devices at room temperature. Do not place them in direct sunlight.

· If a battery overheats or you notice an odor, change in shape/color, leaking or odd noises from a device, discontinue use immediately. If safe to do so, move the device away from anything that can catch fire and call 911.