Recently, The Consumer Product Safety Commission recalled hoverboards from several companies over concerns the devices could catch fire or explode. Several different recalls have affected about 16,000 hoverboards from brands including iHoverspeed, Sonic Smart Wheels, Tech Drift, iLive, Go Wheels, Drone Nerds, LayZ Board and Smart Balance Wheel.
All these eight brands of self-balancing scooters share a common problem: lithium-ion batteries that could potentially overheat and cause a fire or explode. Another factor that increases risk is to have flammable materials near where the devices are charging. LayZ Board self-balancing scooters issued a warning to consumers to stop using them after the hoverboard was determined as the cause of a fire that destroyed one townhouse and damaged four others nearby. In May, the agency issued a warning about the LayZ brand following a house fire in Pennsylvania in March that killed two girls. The house suffered from $40,000 in property damage as well in this incident. So far no injuries have been reported to have been linked to the older hoverboards, but many serious burns were likely prevented by the massive recalls.
The self-balancing scooters have been popular gifts during the holidays since 2015, but plagued with issues of overheating batteries leading to potential fires and explosions. The reputation of the product became so tarnished, in 2015 several major airlines banned hoverboards being brought onboard due to ongoing safety risks. Many retailers and manufacturers are offering full refunds or replacements with newer models that contain a safe UL-certified charger or battery pack.
There are also risks that come alongside being on a motorized device. While hoverboards do not reach high speeds they are recommended to be used with helmets. Without using a helmet, the consumer risks a head injury should they fall on a hard surface. It is advised to use them on level surfaces and to pay attention for traffic hazards.
Some medicines make their users dizzy or tired. It is advised to only use a hoverboard when alert and well-rested. It’s important not to attempt dangerous tricks, and to use the device in a responsible manner.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission has the contact information for these eight manufacturers to contact them about the recall. If you or a loved one has safety concerns about a product call an attorney, like a personal injury lawyer Naperville IL relies on, today.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from The Law Offices of Konrad Sherinian for their insight into product liability.