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Are Hoverboards Still Dangerous?

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Are Hoverboards Still Dangerous?

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No longer a dream of the future, hoverboards can be found anywhere from sidewalks to college campuses to kitchens and hallways within people’s homes. Since the rise of popularity in these devices, accidents involving these products have skyrocketed, primarily in the form of falls. However, many people may remember them for the spontaneous fires which occurred in many of the early models.

Also known as self-balancing or two-wheel boards, these toys attracted the immediate attention of children and adults alike, particularly those already drawn to the skate scene.

Due to their meteoric rise in popularity since their conception in 2015, other manufacturers quickly began selling similar hoverboards but failed to perform adequate quality inspections. Many of these hoverboard manufacturers became famous for their products, which would spontaneously catch fire even when not in use. As a result, they were banned from many college campuses.

By 2018, over 300 incidences of hoverboards suddenly catching fire were reported to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and the faulty models were recalled.

Although spontaneous combustion is certainly an eye-catching type of accident and one that resulted in injury burns and property damage for many unfortunate users, this is not the primary type of accident to generally occur while using hoverboards, and the problems with the product which caused it to spontaneously burst into flame seem to have been solved for the most part. However, that does not mean these products are safe.

Falls are the most common cause of injury in hoverboard accidents.

Like any toy or device which requires human balance to work properly, there is the risk of falls and subsequent injuries that occur due to falls. Hoverboards are motorized, which makes them especially dangerous due to how much faster they can go compared to skateboards or scooters. Between the years of 2015 to 2016, the American Academy of Pediatrics recorded more than 26,000 children visiting the emergency room due to hoverboard injuries. Boys were more often the subject of these injuries than girls, and the average age at which these injuries occurred was around 11 years old. Injuries due to hoverboard accidents occurred mostly to the wrists, forearms, and heads. Head injuries are extremely dangerous and should be taken seriously. That being said, non-motorized toys like skateboards and scooters were also responsible for a significant amount of injuries during that time.

If you or your child were injured in a hoverboard accident, consider seeking medical attention.

If you or your child were injured in a hoverboard accident, symptoms to watch out for that could indicate a serious injury may include loss of consciousness, changes in behavior, sudden unexplainable changes in mood, seizures, severe headaches, vomiting or severe nausea, and swelling of the head or injured area.

While it should be possible to use these devices with reasonable safety, product defects do continue to occur.

Types of product defects include manufacturing defects, lacking effective warnings, lacking effective design, and failing to account for foreseeable disuse. If an injury occurs due to any of these defects rather than mere user error, you may be eligible to file a personal injury claim against the manufacturer. For example, the early hoverboards which spontaneously burst into flame suffered from a manufacturing defect, and the users who sustained burn injuries or property damage as a result had a claim against the manufacturers.

While many of the hoverboard’s defects have been fixed, this does not ensure that defective models are out of circulation.

If you are injured by a defective hoverboard, it’s important that you hold onto the defective product as well as any packaging and instructions that came with it should you choose to file a product liability claim down the road.

Always use recommended safety practices and follow the product’s safety guidelines when operating a hoverboard.

Failing to adhere to the age, weight, protective gear, and riding restrictions of a hoverboard could result in serious injuries for you or your child, most often in the form of falls. Hoverboards can present fun, exciting ways to get outdoors and stay active, but should only be used with proper attention to safety, proper safety equipment, and adult supervision.

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