Here we go again.
Following the tragic deaths of two children in Pennsylvania caused by a hoverboard fire earlier this month, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) just announced the recall of yet another hoverboard brand.
The brand is Los Angeles-based Vecaro LifeStyle and the reason for the recall is the same as the ones we reported in 2016—lithium-ion batteries.
“The lithium-ion battery packs in the self-balancing scooters/hoverboards can overheat, posing a risk of smoking, catching fire and/or exploding,” reads the advisory on the CPSC’s website, which specifically names the Glide65, Drift8 and Trek10 models of the Vecaro hoverboards.
A visit to the Vecaro website shows its normal colorful promotions for hoverboards, but if you look waaaaaay down on the bottom of the page in small text you’ll see that the company has also posted its own recall notice.
“Customers, who purchased a Vecaro Hoverboard at any time during November 2015 through November 2016, should immediately discontinue use and choose one of the following remedies,” reads the notice, which then suggests returning the unit to the company for repair, or sending it in to receive a $200 credit toward the purchase of a UL-safety certified Vecaro hoverboard.
But considering that most of Vecaro’s hoverboards cost more than $200, the deal seems to fall short of doing the right thing, and outright replacing a potentially dangerous device.
Just a few months ago, the company showed film and music star Jamie Foxx using one of its hoverboards in a splash across several social media sites including Twitter and Instagram. So while hoverboards have mostly fallen off the list of cool tech toys, it’s clear that hoverboard companies are still using celebrities to draw attention to the devices.
Hopefully, this new recall, which covers roughly 500 devices, isn’t the first of a new wave of recalls, but it definitely underscores the government’s renewed attention to hoverboards in the wake of the recent hoverboard fire deaths.
All that said, hoverboards may be corny, but no, they aren’t actually evil—just don’t assume you’re using a UL safety-certified device. If you insist on riding one, check it for what could be wrong with it first.