MADISON, Wis. – The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) reminds the public of the dangers of throwing rechargeable batteries, electronics and other materials that could cause a fire in trash or recycling bins.

In the last month, there have been large, damaging fires at multiple Wisconsin recycling facilities. While it is hard to pinpoint the exact cause of each fire, many batteries, especially powerful lithium-ion batteries found in many electronics, can cause fires when not disposed of properly. These batteries hold a considerable charge even when they no longer provide enough energy to power the device, and when damaged, they can spark or heat up and cause a fire.

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