Hoverboards are not safe for kids under 14, warns DOH

Sure, they're fun. But the DOH and DTI agree that the trendy hoverboards we've been seeing practically everywhere are pretty dangerous. Find out why here.

With a lot of kids still enjoying the fun hoverboards over the holidays, these new findings are sure to cause some disappointment for many kids, as well as parents.

The Department of Health (DOH) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) have just released a joint advisory discouraging the public from purchasing two-wheeled gliding scooters or hoverboards for children under 14 years of age.

Both government entities arrived at a concensus that hoverboards pose dangers to young kids because of their high-voltage batteries.

Most hoverboards are powered by 36-volt batteries which aren't compatible with current regulations which only allow 24 volts as the standard for electronic children's toys.

What's more is that some models are run with poorly-designed lithium ion batteries which often leat to overheating when charging, causing fires and in some cases, explosion.

Aside from the dangers posed by the battery wattage, the advisory warns against the dangers for kids to lose their balance as the platform moves. This unsteady driving position may be difficult for kids and it also increases the risk for injury.

In fact, the advisory says, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) noted an increase in reported hoverboard-related injuries such as fractures, contusions, lacerations, sprains, strains, and head injuries.

Adults are susceptible to the dangers of hoverboards as well.

The collaborative advisory between DOH and DTI strongly urges parents not to buy hoverboards due to these recent health and safety concerns.

In fact, several airline companies, both here and abroad have banned all lithium battery-powered devices such as hoverboards as checked in or carry on baggage.

But not everyone is happy with this ban. Just recently, Hollywood actor Russell Crowe tweeted this after Virgin Airlines banned his kids' 'segway boards' on a recent flight.

However, many airlines remain adamant regarding their no hoverboard policy because these are fire hazards.

A man in New York recently pressed charges against the manufacturers when the hoverboard he purchased suddenly burst into flames.

Read on to find out how to buy a hoverboard which won't catch on fire

Here are some simple tips on how to buy hoverboards that won't easily catch on fire:

  • Buy one that adequately supports your body weight (most hoverboards have a weight limit of 300 lbs.)
  • Buy directly from a manufacturer
  • Don't buy anything under $300 (or about Php14,000)

Watch this short video to learn more.

READ: 2-year-old’s death highlights danger of swallowing small objects

If you have any insights, questions or comments regarding the topic, please share them in our Comment box below. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Google+ to stay up-to-date on the latest from theAsianparent.com Philippines!