HAYDEN, Idaho — Fire investigators, looking to find the cause of a massive fire in Hayden last week, have pinpointed a cause. The fire severely damaged Ballard Golf Cars and Power Sports.
Now, fire officials believe the fire started in the battery charger location in the back of the repair building, according to Chris Larson, Deputy Fire Marshall of Northern Lakes Fire District. The Deputy Fire Marshall said the location is where lithium batteries were left charging.
A private investigation by the insurance company will be happening soon to determine whether there was an electrical issue or a defect in the charger, Larson said. The investigation will also determine if there was a recall or if there needs to be a recall related to the charger.
The Deputy Fire Marshall said people should make sure they unplug lithium charger batteries at night before bed to minimize their fire risk.
Multiple fire crews responded to the fire last week, including Coeur d'Alene, Timberlake and Hauser Lake. Fire officials estimate there were about 40 to 50 firefighters working during the peak of the fire. NLFD Deputy fire marshal Larson said it took crews about two hours to knock down the fire. No injuries were reported in the fire.
According to Larson, the fire burned the majority of the building, with three-quarters of it considered to be a total loss.
He estimates the replacement cost for the building alone to be around $2 million and said it’s a “critical loss” to the owners of Ballard Golf Cars and Power Sports.