New bill cracking down on lithium-ion batteries introduced by New York lawmakers. Is that how it works.

NEW YORK — New York lawmakers have introduced a bill that would crack down on lithium ion batteriesthat have caused Record number of fatal fires in New York City.

Representative Ritchie Torres introduced the Lithium-Ion Batteries Consumer Standards Establishment Act in the House of Representatives on Tuesday.

Lithium-ion battery legislation introduced in Congress

The bill requires the Consumer Product Safety Commission to establish a safety standard for rechargeable lithium-ion batteries used in devices such as electric scooters and bicycles.

“Poorly manufactured lithium-ion batteries, largely imported from China, are hidden time bombs waiting to detonate in American homes and communities,” Torres said.

CBS New York’s Lisa Rozner spoke with Torres before he went to the House.

“One of the safety standards is to require that all lithium-ion batteries meet UL Certificationto voluntary certification standards,” he said.

“UL” stands for Underwriters Laboratories, a company that ensures electronic products meet safety standards.

Torres expected the House to pass the bill on Wednesday, followed by the Senate in the near future. He expects the president to sign the bill within a year.

Lithium-ion batteries cause devastating fires in New York

Torres said that between 2019 and 2023, the The New York City Fire Department reported more than 400 fires, 300 injuries and 12 fire deaths caused by lithium ion batteries.

Shocking video from March 2023 shows how a lithium-ion battery charging an electric bike caused a five-alarm fire. that destroyed a supermarket and a laundromat on Grand Concourse. A year later, witnesses say it’s a miracle no one died, but dozens lost their jobs and convenient access to goods.

Khalid Raja owns a neighboring business and says he has felt the impact of the loss.

“There was a lot of foot traffic, so we’ve lost almost 40 percent in business,” he said.

Raja says he is in favor of regulation.

“Motorcycles should at least be regulated, if not banned. But they should at least be regulated,” he said. “It’s crazy because one little battery can destroy the entire business.”