Hoverboards were the hot Christmas gift in 2015. Both children and adults alike clamored for the two-wheeled, self-balancing motorized device that is somewhat a cross between a skateboard and a Segway, minus the handle bars. While sales of the recreational transportation device increased dramatically over the holidays, reports of numerous accidental injuries caused by hover boards are currently making headlines and raising concerns from consumer product safety groups. If you or someone you know is a hoverboard aficionado, it is important to be aware of the potential dangers posed by this latest technological craze.
Injuries Caused By Hoverboards
According to December 2015 news reports from CNN regarding the dangers of hover boards, hoverboard accidents have resulted in an increase in injuries since the holidays, and internet sellers such as Amazon have begun halting sales of certain models due to safety concerns. Within a matter of mere days after Christmas morning, there were more than 70 hover boards injuries reported throughout the country. South Florida congressman Carlos Curbelo was the among the latest of those injured when he was taken to the emergency room and emerged with his arm in a sling after testing out the hoverboard his nephew received for Christmas. Aside from fall injuries, there have been concerns over the boards bursting into flames, and many airlines have now banned hover boards from being brought aboard planes. A CNBC news report on hover boards indicate that as many as 22 hoverboard fires have occurred in 17 different states. In addition to burns, injuries related to hover board falls and collisions include the following:
- Muscle and tendon sprains, strains and tears;
- Fractured bones;
- Contusions and bruising;
- Back injuries, such as slipped or ruptured disks; and
- Head injuries, including traumatic brain injury.
As with any type of recreation vehicle, hover boards riders should always wear the appropriate safety gear, such as a helmet and knee and elbow pads.
Safety Warnings Issued Regarding Hover Boards
After repeated reports of burns and other hoverboard injuries, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has launched an investigation to determine the root cause of hoverboard related fires, as well as to investigate the level of risk the boards in terms of injuries to consumers. One of the CPSC’s main concerns is that there are no standard safety practices in place for hoverboards. Until common safety standards can be applied to hoverboards, the CPSC advises retailers to require extra proof of sound manufacturing, design, and quality control procedures from the suppliers of boards they purchase to sell to consumers. The CPSC recommends the following tips for anyone considering buying a hover board:
- Buy only from a trusted retailer;
- Do not charge the boards overnight or when you will not be able to observe the board while being charged;
- Store the board in a dry area away from combustible materials; and
- Wear appropriate safety gear when riding a hoverboard, and be sure to stay away from areas with high traffic.
Contact Our Experienced Florida Personal Injury Attorneys
If you or a loved one has been injured while riding a hoverboard or in a hoverboard related fire, contact our experienced Florida personal injury attorneys today. At Hogan Frick, our attorneys can help hold irresponsible manufacturers and supplies accountable for the injuries their products caused, and may be able to assist in getting compensation for your injuries. With offices in Orlando, Gainesville, Ocala, Kissimmee, and Lakeland, we can provide you with a free consultation on your case.