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**CONSUMER ALERT** CFO & State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis: Take Caution when Purchasing Lithium-Ion Battery Products this Holiday Season

For Immediate Release: Monday, December 11, 2023
Contact: Office of Communications,, 850.413.2842


CFO & State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis: Take Caution when Purchasing Lithium-Ion Battery Products this Holiday Season

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, Florida Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis issued safety and fire prevention tips for holiday gifts that rely on the use of lithium-ion batteries. Reports indicate that lithium-ion battery fires have increased in 2023, and CFO Patronis is urging Floridians to buy products with certified batteries that are up to national safety standards. The UL Fire Safety Research Institute is educating the public on battery safety with their new initiative “Take C.H.A.R.G.E. of Battery Safety.”  

CFO and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis said, “As lithium-ion powered devices become more popular commodities, especially during the holiday season, I am urging Floridians to take extreme care when purchasing any product for your friends and family that is powered by a lithium-ion battery. Once these fires begin, they can spread quickly and become extremely difficult for firefighters to put out. Floridians should ensure that lithium-ion batteries are certified for safety by checking for nationally recognized testing laboratory markings like UL, ETL, CSA, or SGS. Make sure that you educate your kids on fire safety tips to keep the Christmas Spirit bright. Don’t let visions of a beautiful and bright holiday turn into the nightmare before Christmas.”

Important Lithium-Ion Battery Safety Tips:

  • Choose certified products. When purchasing lithium-ion battery-powered devices, look for products that are listed or safety certified by a nationally recognized testing laboratory with markings such as UL, ETL, CSA or SGS to ensure they meet important safety requirements.
  • Handle with care. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Only use the charging equipment that comes with the product. Store batteries away from extreme temperatures, direct sunlight, exits, and anything flammable. Charge larger devices away from your exit path and outside your home if possible. Do not charge larger devices overnight.
  • Always stay alert for warning signs. Check battery-powered devices often for damage or abuse such as swelling or punctures. Listen for unusual hissing or popping sounds. Watch out for excessive heat or a strange odor. If you notice any of these warning signs, stop using the lithium-ion battery-powered device immediately. White or gray wispy smoke indicates there is immediate danger of fire.
  • Recycle devices and batteries properly. When disposing of batteries, chargers or battery-powered devices DO NOT put them in the trash! Take them to the recycling center.
  • Get out if there’s a fire. Get out if you see or hear warning signs. Follow your home fire escape plan to leave immediately and call 9-1-1.


About CFO Jimmy Patronis 
Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis is a statewide elected official and a member of Florida’s Cabinet who oversees the Department of Financial Services. CFO Patronis works each day to fight insurance fraud, support Florida’s firefighters, and ensure the state’s finances are stable to support economic growth in the state. Follow the activities of the Department on Facebook (FLDFS) and on X (@FLDFS).

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