Tragic Flat Fire Claims Lives of Woman and Two Children Linked to Accidental E-bike Charging, Fire Service Finds

…By Alan Peterson for TDPel Media. A tragic incident involving a flat fire in Cambridge has claimed the lives of a woman and two young children.


According to the fire service, the most probable cause of the fire was an e-bike that was being charged.

The incident occurred in Sackville Close in the early hours of Friday, resulting in the death of Gemma Germeney, 31, while eight-year-old Lilly Peden and four-year-old Oliver Peden passed away after being taken to the hospital.

Investigation Points to E-bike as Probable Cause:

Following an investigation into the fatal fire, Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service announced that it is believed to have started accidentally, with an e-bike being the most likely cause.


Area Commander Stuart Smith stated that fire investigators, along with police forensic teams and a fire dog, thoroughly examined the maisonette over the weekend.

The focus of the investigation pointed towards an electric bike that was in the process of charging.

Safety Precautions and Awareness:

The fire service highlighted the growing popularity of e-bikes and e-scooters as personal modes of transport and emphasized the need for caution.

They urged individuals who own such devices to be mindful of potential risks and to follow simple precautions to minimize the chances of battery overheating.

The tragic incident prompted a broader reflection on fire safety at home, prompting the fire service to provide additional information on their website and dispatch their fire safety team to the Sackville Close area to offer advice and reassurance.


Advice on Charging E-bike Batteries:

In light of the incident, the fire service issued important advice to the public.

They recommended against charging the battery of an e-bike or e-scooter overnight and advised against leaving the device connected to the charger longer than necessary for a full charge.

These precautions are intended to reduce the risk of battery-related incidents.

Firefighting Efforts and Injuries:

Emergency services responded to the incident at 1:08 am on Friday, with more than 30 firefighters dispatched to the scene.

Smoke was observed emanating from the ground and first floor of the two-storey maisonette.


Fire crews worked tirelessly to extinguish the fire and prevent it from spreading to neighboring properties.

A man in his 30s managed to escape the flat before the arrival of firefighters but sustained serious injuries and was transported to the hospital in critical condition.


The tragic flat fire in Cambridge, resulting in the loss of three lives, is believed to have been caused by an accidental fire originating from a charging e-bike.

The incident serves as a reminder for e-bike and e-scooter owners to exercise caution and adhere to safety guidelines.

The fire service continues to offer support, guidance, and reassurance to the affected community while raising awareness about fire safety measures.



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