The Centre on Thursday (April 7) decided to summon Ola Electric and Okinawa Scooters executives to explain cases of their electric scooters catching fire. Technical teams of both companies are to be called after an independent investigation is complete, CNBC-TV18 reported, citing government sources.
A Mint report said the Centre may even ask the electric scooter makers to recall their two-wheelers. It is likely to take a call on testing standards for EVS after the outcome of the report. The Centre is also reportedly looking into whether there were quality control issues in manufacturing, the driving style of the customers, and how the scooters were maintained and whether the testing protocol for ARAI and ICAT need to be revised.
In the first incident, a new Ola S1 Pro caught fire while parked on the side of a road in Pune. The video, which showed smoke emerging from the battery compartment, went viral on the internet. In the second incident, a parent and daughter were killed when an Okinawa scooter caught fire in Tamil Nadu. There were two more incidents of EV fires.
According to a Reuters report, lithium-ion batteries (used in the Ola scooters), whether used in electric vehicles or electronic devices, can catch fire if they have been improperly manufactured or damaged, or if the software that operates the battery is not designed correctly.