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Rechargeable Batteries, A “Hot Topic”

Don't Ignite Recycle Rechargeable Batteries Correctly

Rechargeable Batteries, A “Hot Topic”

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WARNING: Lithium-ion batteries cause fires if not disposed of properly!

Why you ask?  They break open during the disposal process and when exposed to air they ignite.

Every day rechargeable batteries (cell phones, electronics, tools, vacuum cleaners) break open and ignite fires in solid waste processing systems and equipment (trucks, facilities, landfills) around the world. It’s happening frequently nationwide and locally.

Within seven days, Mecklenburg County had to extinguish five separate small fires at waste facilities – all due to misplaced rechargeable batteries.  In early October 2021, a tractor-trailer load full of materials caught fire on highway 485 resulting in a $100,000 loss. 

Investigations nearly always reveal the common cause to be errantly discarded rechargeable batteries from common household electronics, appliances, and toys such as cell phones, vacuum cleaners, power tools, remote control toys, scooters, etc.

Here is a detailed article on this topic:

When a rechargeable device fails or the batteries wear out, PLEASE bring them to any Mecklenburg County Full-Service Center Household Hazardous Waste Area for proper disposal.  Never put rechargeable batteries in the trash or recycling cart.  Full-Service Centers are open 6 days each week from 7am – 4pm, and there is no charge to drop off rechargeable batteries. If the battery cannot be easily removed, please bring the whole device to assistance.

Please visit for more information or email waste-related questions to

Additional Info

Media Contact : Maitri Meyer

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Source : Mecklenburg County Solid Waste

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