More than 500,000 hoverboards are being recalled for fire concerns, following months of stories about exploding batteries causing property damage and injuries. More than half of the recalled hoverboards come from Swagway, one of the best known manufacturers in the space. It's recalling 267,000 of its X1 hoverboard units.
Eight hoverboard manufacturers are issuing recalls, as well as two retailers. The site Overstock.com is recalling all hoverboards sold to date, a total of around 4,300.
"We’ve concluded pretty definitively that these are not safe products."
The US Consumer Product Safety Commission says that "consumers should immediately stop using these recalled products." Anyone who owns a recalled hoverboard is instructed to get in touch with the recalling company to see about returning the affected unit. Depending on the company, they may choose to issue a refund, fix the hoverboard, or replace it with another model.
In all cases, the potential problems stem from the boards' lithium-ion battery packs, which can overheat, "posing a risk of the products smoking, catching fire and/or exploding." The safety commission says that at least 99 incidents of damage or injury, including burns, from battery issues have been reported.
"We are urging consumers to act quickly," CPSC chairman Elliot Kaye tells ABC News. "We’ve concluded pretty definitively that these are not safe products the way they were designed."
Other recalling brands include Razor's Hovertrax, Keenford's iMoto, Hype Wireless's Hype Roam, Hoverboard's Powerboard, Digital Gadgets' Hover-Way, PTX Performance's Airwalk, Orbit units sold at Boscov’s, and eight different boards sold by Yuka Clothing, including one called Back to the Future.
The good news for enthusiasts of strange personal transportation devices is that safe hoverboards are finally rolling out to stores. Amazon and Best Buy began selling several units last month that have gone through a certification developed in response to the continued battery explosions. Those units, theoretically, shouldn't be pose these same problems.