Hoverboard Explosions

Hoverboards have become a very popular gift for children and adults alike. Videos of people falling off them have provided some sadistic entertainment and alerted watchers to the dangers of attempting to use the devices without practice. Another very serious danger with hoverboards is that they are prone to catching fire or exploding, even when not in use. Injuries occurring from exploding hoverboards can alter your life in many different ways. Make sure to speak to a Las Vegas product liability attorney immediately if you have been involved in a hoverboard explosion.

Several manufacturers and retailers are recalling the devices over the fire hazard, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CSPC). The CPSC reports that as of June 2016, over half a million hoverboards were being recalled due to catching fire, injuring riders, and resulting in over $2 million in property damage.

The worst offenders, according to the CSPC, include:

  • Swagway X1 Smartboard – Responsible for 42 hoverboard fires or explosions, resulting in 16 reports of severe burns on the legs, neck, and arm as well as property damage.
  • Hoverboard Powerboards – The source of 27 reported cases of fires, sparking, and overheating, leading to 1 report of property damage. These hoverboards are typically sold at kiosks in the mall.
  • Digital Gadgets Hover-Way – Connected to 17 reports of overheating batteries, causing two cases of burn injuries and two reports of property damage. These hoverboards are sold through QVC’s home shopping TV channel.

Why are Hoverboards Catching Fire?

Hoverboards, which do not actually hover over the ground but are a self-balancing two-wheel device, are powered by lithium-ion batteries. These batteries power many basic household items and are one of the most popular types of rechargeable batteries on the market currently. Obviously, these batteries are typically quite safe and not prone to random explosion.

When lithium-ion batteries are poorly constructed and made to power large, high-power machines, they become dangerous. Since hoverboards are intended to carry a human from one place to another, they require quite a bit of energy and thus are packed with many lithium-ion batteries. This means that there is more energy in a smaller space and when something goes wrong, it really goes wrong. Many manufacturers try to cut corners by using lower quality lithium-ion batteries or hoverboard design that does not protect the product from the possibility of battery malfunction. This type of negligence warrants compensation if serious injuries were acquired. Speak to an attorney immediately.

There are several reasons these batteries light on fire, including:

  • Overcharging
  • Using incompatible chargers
  • Manufacturing defects
  • Physical damage to the body of the hoverboard that affects the structure of the lithium-ion battery core
  • Contact with metal, such as keys
  • Very hot temperatures

What Can You Do After Injuries from a Hoverboard?

If you have a hoverboard that hasn’t caught fire, you should still contact the manufacturer and demand your money back as they are essentially a fire hazard waiting to happen. Unless the manufacturer can show that the device has been certified as safe by Underwriters Laboratories, you should be able to get a refund.

There are several class-action lawsuits against specific companies that have had their products catch fire or explode. If you have been injured by a hoverboard that is made by a company undergoing a class action lawsuit, it is possible to join. Class action lawsuits aim to get refunds for everyone who purchased a dangerous hoverboard. If the plaintiffs win, everyone in the class action will receive a part of the compensation. Speak to a Las Vegas personal injury attorney to learn more.

Alternatively to joining a class action lawsuit, it is also possible to initiate your own lawsuit to seek damages for your specific case. Victims of defective products have a right to compensation for their losses, including:

  • Medical bills
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost income
  • Lost ability to earn income
  • Property damage

If you or a loved one has been injured by or incurred property damage due to a hoverboard, be sure to contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible. Because most hoverboards are made in China by a variety of manufacturers, it can be difficult to pin down exactly who is responsible and in what capacity. Having an experienced lawyer on your side who will aggressively fight on your behalf can help you get the compensation you deserve. It is unacceptable for a product that is purchased as a fun toy to catch fire or explode. This puts consumers at an unnecessary and unanticipated risk for serious injury that, unlike a broken arm or bruised tailbone, could not have been foreseen.

Call an Attorney If You’ve Been Involved in a Hoverboard Explosion

Having served victims of all types of catastrophic events throughout Nevada, Harris & Harris Injury Lawyers represents clients in a professional, diligent and respectful way. With over 15 years of experience, we have the tools, resources and experience to handle any type of personal injury case. Give us a call at (702) 384-1414 to speak to an attorney today.

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