Hoverboards Receive UL Certification and Roll Again
With the development of the hoverboard, consumers felt that the future finally had arrived with the rechargeable, self-balancing, two-wheeled, portable board. It took them “Back to the Future” and became the talk of the town last holiday season. Everyone wanted one and they disappeared off the shelves.
When complaints started coming in at a record’s pace, however, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and UL began looking into how this popular toy could cause such chaos. Consumers reported more than 60 hoverboard fires in 20 states. Thus many companies issued a recall and asked consumers to return the hoverboards because they were too dangerous and unpredictable.
To address these concerns, UL, a safety science organization, developed new requirements that addressed the fire, shock and hazards associated with the toy. The standard tests everything hoverboards from the construction, performance, electrical and mechanical processes to the verification of markings in the instruction manual.
Ken Boyce, UL Director of Principal Engineers, said these safety requirements began with a concept to evaluate the charger and battery pack and included all of the associated electronics for an overall safety review. Beginning in Summer 2016, hoverboards that received UL certification made a comeback in the marketplace. To find out which boards have received UL certification, go to the Online Certifications Directory and enter “FKIS” in the category field.
While these products continue to be reintroduced into the market, consumers should look for the UL holographic certification mark on the hoverboard and the UL promotional mark that manufacturers place on the packaging. Claims that pieces or parts of a hoverboard are UL certified do not address the overall safety issues originally experienced by users and may not be reliable.
Owners should take care and continue to take safety precautions. Watch this video to learn additional hoverboard safety tips.