Week Commencing 08/01/2024 – In The News

Mitigating the risk of Lithium-ion batteries: Eight-step action plan

Reports of fires breaking out due to the increased use of Lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries are on the rise. Speaking at FIREX 2023, Matt Humby, Senior Technical Sales Consultant at Firechief Global, outlined where the batteries are being used and how to mitigate the fire risk. Lucy Booker reports.

Li-ion batteries are now a firm fixture of our daily lives. They’re in portable devices, electric vehicles and renewable energy storage systems. “Li-ion batteries are complex subjects. They’re getting smaller, lighter and more powerful,” said Matt Humby, in his opening remarks.
The crux of the session focused on the reports of an increasing number of fires linked to Li-ion batteries, as seen in several recent news stories. Here, Humby’s message was clear: “We need to change our mindset of how we view and treat Li-ion batteries – understanding the way they work is key,” he said.

Read more on the SHP website.

Boeing 737 Max 9: United Airlines finds loose bolts in jet inspections

Bolts in need of “additional tightening” have been found during inspections of Boeing 737 Max 9s, United Airlines has said.

United Airlines said “installation issues” relating to door plugs would be “remedied” before the aircraft type would return to service.

Inspections began after a section of the fuselage fell from an Alaska Airlines 737 Max 9 on Friday. Alaska Airlines says it has since found “some loose hardware” on some Max 9s. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), which regulates air travel in the US, has grounded 171 planes of the same type.

United said: “Since we began preliminary inspections on Saturday, we have found instances that appear to relate to installation issues in the door plug – for example, bolts that needed additional tightening.”

The door plug is a piece of fuselage, with a window, that fills the space where an emergency exit would be in certain configurations. It was this part of the Alaska Airlines plane which dramatically fell off mid-flight over the US state of Oregon, eventually landing in a teacher’s back garden.

For more on the inspections visit the BBC website.

‘My feet slid around and my legs hurt from gripping my toes’: Jane Middleton on ill-fitting PPE

The Chartered Engineering Geologist has to privately source boots and tailor men’s trousers just to go to work.On my very first day in an exciting new job, in a position I had worked hard to achieve, I went to the company’s PPE store cupboard and was unable to find anything that would fit. In fact, for two years I just assumed women’s PPE wasn’t available.

I had to endure the effects of poor-fitting boots, where my feet slid around and my legs hurt from gripping my toes, which would also bump on the end of the boot as there was so much room; this, despite wearing several pairs of socks. This year though, I have personally trialled a set of women’s boots through a private supplier (Amblers Safety Boots) which have been a game-changer. This is the first time I’ve used boots that are based on a woman’s foot, which are narrower than men’s, and they fit well. My foot is no longer sliding around, and they are so much more comfortable.

When it comes to trousers, I have to wear men’s (again owing to the lack of women’s sizes), however, I find my thighs and hips are too wide for a small, so I have to go up in size which requires me to tailor the length. When I first began my career I would cut off the bottom of the larger trousers, making me look like I was wearing something my Dad would put on. It would make me feel extremely self-conscious. Even today, I am unable to find waterproof trousers that fit so I continue to have to customise them to take up the length. In the summer, I wear long-sleeved yellow tops, which I find can go see-through which means I have to consider what underwear I have on to ensure it isn’t showing.

Visit the SHP website to read more about Jane’s experiences.

Wimbledon: Electric double-decker bus catches fire during rush hour

An electric double-decker bus caught fire during the morning rush hour in south-west London.

Emergency services were called to Wimbledon Hill Road/Alwyne Road in Wimbledon shortly after 07:20 GMT.

Transport for London (TfL) said the bus was quickly evacuated, and the Met Police said no injuries were reported. The force declared a critical incident.

Max Pashley, a local resident, told City A.M.: “We heard a huge bang. We were terrified.”

Tom Cunnington, TfL’s head of bus business development, said: “Safety is our top priority and we are working with the operator, London General, and the bus manufacturer, Switch, to investigate what happened.”

Read more about the incident on the BBC website.

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