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Published March 15, 2024

Metrolinx to ban some e-bikes on GO trains

Concerns raised by Toronto fire officials about fires caused by lithium−ion batteries
Metrolinx to ban some e-bikes on GO trains

Metrolinx, which operates trains on Toronto’s GO network, will move to restrict e−bikes with non−certified batteries starting April 9.

Spokesperson Andrea Ernesaks says the transit operator will require e−bike batteries to comply with recognized safety standards.

The move comes after concerns were raised by Toronto fire officials about the number of fires caused by lithium−ion batteries last year.

Fire Chief Matthew Pegg said in January that a fire on a subway train on New Year’s Eve was caused by the failure of a lithium−ion battery powering an e−bike.

Pegg added that faulty batteries are causing more fires in Toronto, with 55 fires in the city last year that resulted from the failure of lithium−ion batteries, up from 29 such fires in 2022.

Ernesaks says the decision to restrict certain types of e−bikes was made after a policy review.

"Over the course of the past several months, Metrolinx has been actively reviewing our bike policies to support increased demand from our bike users," she said in an emailed statement.

"To ensure the safety of our customers and better align with other jurisdictions, Metrolinx will require e−bike batteries to comply with standard UL or CE requirements in addition to other measures," she said, referring to recognized safety standards.

banner image: The Canadian Press

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