CPSC Warns Consumers of Hoverboard Risk
July 31, 2017
Consumers Urged Not to Use LayZ Board Hoverboards After Two Young Girls Die in House Fire
The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recently confirmed that a LayZ Board hoverboard was involved in a fatal house fire, which claimed the lives of two young girls. As a result, the commission has released an “urgent” warning to consumers to immediately stop using all LayZ Board hoverboards because the risk of injuries or death is far too high.
Across thirty-nine states, more than 100 nonfatal incidents involving different hoverboard models are being investigated. According to the Harrisburg Fire Department, however, a LayZ Board started the fire that killed a 2-year-old and a ten-year-old. Data shows that before the hoverboard burst into flame it began to “sizzle”, all while it was still plugged in to an electrical outlet in the girls’ home.
The two girls were in their house at the time of the fire. Witnesses and family members reported that the ten-year-old tried to help her family members escape their house once the fire had started. Sadly, neither she nor her 2-year-old sister ever made it out of the flames.
As we have seen in the past, often a company will comply with the CPSC and help facilitate product recalls to avoid any future injuries or fatalities. In this case, it appears that the company, which is based in China, may not be complying with the commission. It appears this way because the CPSC has not launched an official product recall; instead, it has issued a consumer safety warning. Attempts by various news stations to contact the manufacturer have all failed as well. More than 3,000 LayZ Board hoverboards have been sold in the U.S.
The LayZ Board hoverboard is a battery-powered, two-wheeled and self-balancing scooter. The product has no handlebar but does come with a pivoting platform, which users are supposed to put their feet on while they ride. The CPSC notes that consumers can identify the product by checking the front of the packaging, where “LayZ Board” will be written.
This is not the first time that the dangers of hoverboards have made the news, but it is the CPSC’s first report of a fatal house fire occurring because of one. Although the product has jumped in popularity in recent years, the CPSC has investigated at least six other cases of house fires caused by hoverboards, as well as nearly 30 reports of various hospitalizations and emergency room visits, most of which were caused by falls. Altogether, it appears that consumers should exercise extreme caution when using or charging a hoverboard, and make sure to always check in on the CPSC’s site to ensure that more recalls or consumer warnings have not been released. With more information coming out that points to hoverboards being dangerous, they may not be worth the risk to you or your child’s health at all.
Because this is not an official recall, the CPSC’s resources are a bit more limited than they usually are when a manufacturer is voluntarily complying.
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