South Korean battery makers refuted findings by a team of experts and government officials who announced on Feb. 6 that 4 out of 5 of the fires that occurred at Energy Storage Systems between August and October in 2019 were due to batteries.
The investigative team said that a variety of defects in the batteries were caused most of the fires, but battery makers LG Chem and Samsung SDI immediately issued statements denying the claims.
The two companies also found fault with the investigation itself, saying that fires did not occur in some of the reenactments. They also criticized the team for preemptively targeting batteries in the first place as the cause of the fires.
“In the previous first round of investigations, there had been some consideration and analysis about the management of ESS in general, but this time, the investigaton was purely focused on batteries,” said one industry watcher close to the matter. “There doesn’t seem to have been any consideration of the fact that Korea lags in maintaining ESS.”
Between August 2017 and October 2019, up to 28 fires occurred at ESS. Since the government began its investigation in June 2019, five more erupted.
The Elec is South Korea’s No.1 tech news platform.