Beware exploding ‘Hoverboards’
Trading standards warns shoppers to be vigilant after a mother is hurt by exploding gadget
TRADING Standards officers in Bucks have cracked down on the sale of dangerous “hoverboards” after a mother was hurt when her son’s board exploded.
Buckinghamshire and Surrey Trading Standards intercepted a £7,000 consignment of 51 self balancing boards imported from China and sent them for testing to see if they complied with electrical safety standards.
They will now ensure the boards, also known as self balancing scooters or balance boards, can never be used by the public after checks showed that chargers and battery packs supplied with the products posed a fire risk.
Another consignment of 90 boards has been impounded while officers check they are safe. They will be released to the market only if they meet all required standards.
The seizures come after a self balancing board exploded and caught fire at a family home in High Wycombe last month.
Trading standards officers are investigating the case in which Joann Ensell sustained burns when the board belonging to her 10-year-old son Henry exploded and caught fire.
Henry’s father David Ensell, said it had been taken off charge and was on the floor when it suddenly exploded.
His wife is now recovering from her injuries. He said: “We bought it from a reputable retailer, and my advice is always to use a reputable retailer, follow the operating instructions, which we did, but always to take extra precautions because things can do go wrong, as we found out.”
Trading Standards officers have sent Henry’s charred board for investigation at a test laboratory.
The consignment seized by trading standards officers was brought into the country through Heathrow and sent to an inspection point in Surrey where officers spotted possible safety risks.
The boards have surged in popularity in recent months and are expected to be one of the biggest selling gadgets this Christmas. But reports have emerged of poor quality versions that lack proper safety functions.
Shoppers are now being urged to be on their guard when buying a board.
Customers are advised to be wary of bargain boards, to look at the shape of the plug and to check for marking or traceable information such as the manufacturer or importer.
DANGEROUS: The burned board with Trading Standards Officer Tim Day