Victoria Big Battery still burning on Sunday morning 1st August 2021


As short note this afternoon to report that I’ve not seen much else about what’s happening with the ‘Victoria Big Battery’ nearby to Geelong today.

As I type this note, this Advice from Emergency Victoria (issued Sunday morning at 07:40) appears to be the most recent advice, still – and it notes that the fire was still burning and not yet under control as at that time this morning (~46 hours after the first started on Friday morning):

2021-08-01-at-14-26-EmergencyVIC

 

One of our readers has pointed me at this article ‘Firefighters battle large battery fire near Geelong’ from Country Fire Authority on Friday evening, 30th July.  Several things were of interest in this article, as highlighted below:

“We’ve got lots of specialists on site…all that expertise helps us come up with some really good decisions about what we need to do to respond to these types of fires,” he said.

“There was one battery pack on fire to start with, but it did spread to a second pack that was very close to it.

“The plan is that we keep it cool on the outside and protect the exposures so it doesn’t cause any issues for any of the other components in the power station.

“We’re starting to get to the point where most of it has burnt away…we’ll just keep monitoring it overnight and keep dealing with it as we have been all day to ensure that we minimise anything that’s coming offsite and any risk to the community.”

The cause is undetermined and will be investigated once it is safe to do so.

There’s nothing further, yet, under ‘Latest News’ here.  Will keep an eye out, to try to understand more…

About the Author

Paul McArdle
One of three founders of Global-Roam back in 2000, Paul has been CEO of the company since that time. As an author on WattClarity, Paul's focus has been to help make the electricity market more understandable.

2 Comments on "Victoria Big Battery still burning on Sunday morning 1st August 2021"

  1. Nothing too surprising here. Metal fires are extremely difficult to extinguish. They can’t be smothered because they produce their own oxygen and hence self sustain. All you can do is either deluge them with enough water to cool them to a point where the temperatures fall below that necessary for auto ignition (a pretty big ask for such a densely packed module) or let it burn out – which is what is happening here. Simple message – real estate is cheap in Australia – put space around each module to prevent spread from the radiant heat. So next time someone suggests putting one of these things inside your house…..show them the photo. If something (anything) goes wrong simply the energy release is rapid and disproportionately high compared with usual combustible materials and your house will catch fire. By all means have your battery, just don’t put it in or near your (or anyone else’s) house.

  2. Regarding the home battery situation, I recall that a draft Australian standard recommended home batteries be installed in a bunker style housing, separate to the house. The RE lobby got that removed.

    On these batteries, in general the strategy will be to let the bad one burn out and try to keep the rest cool. Makes you think about the risk of having them scattered throughout the distribution network, in suburbs…

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