May 8, 2021

Cayman Airways bans hoverboards from aircraft

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492471314Cayman Airways Limited (CAL) joins with many international airlines in announcing the banning of “hoverboards” on its aircraft.

Effective immediately, the lithium battery powered self-balancing personal transportation devices, commonly referred to as hoverboards, are banned from being transported on all passenger and cargo flights. This immediate restriction has been put in place due to safety concerns raised surrounding the fire risks associated with the powerful lithium batteries used in the products. Inaccurate labeling of these powerful (and potentially dangerous) lithium batteries, along with the largely unregulated manufacture of the products in general, with no consistent safety specifications, create a risk that airlines are simply unwilling to accept.

The Cayman Airways ban extends to all passenger carry-on and checked luggage, as well as to cargo shipments.
“The safety of our passengers and crew remains the top priority for Cayman Airways, so we appreciate the public’s understanding and support,” stated Cayman Airways President and CEO, Fabian Whorms.

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Airlines ban ‘hoverboards’ due to fire risk and safety concerns

By Mariella Moon From engadget

‘Hoverboards’ keep spontaneously combusting and the government is investigating.

Even if those self-balancing scooters called “hoverboards” become street legal in London, you might have a tough time taking one across the pond. A number of airlines has decided to ban them from flights after several reports came out that these devices can spontaneously catch fire, likely because of their lithium-ion batteries. In the past few days, Alaska Airlines, British Airways, JetBlue and Virgin America have announced their decision not to accept the scooters onboard. American Airlines, Delta and United followed suit, and we wouldn’t be surprised if the list keeps growing.

The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is trying to get to the bottom of all incidents reported to the agency and in the news. One hoverboard, for instance, blew up while being charged in a home in New York, while another one in Lousiana shot flames while plugged in, destroying a family’s house in the process. You can also see one burning up in a mall below. That’s in addition to looking into the general safety of using one of these toys, as the agency has apparently received 30 reports of people going to the ER due to hoverboard-related accidents so far.

It’s worth noting that not all hoverboards are created equal and their quality could depend on the manufacturer. Since they’re a new product, however, it’s still hard to know which brands you can trust. Sean Kane, president of the Safety Institute told The Washington Post: “The reality is the safety and fitness of these products is unknown. Are there well-constructed ones that are safe? Maybe. Are there ones that are clearly having problems? The answer is that appears to be the case.” If you already have one in your household, CPSC spokesperson Patty Davis says that to be safe, only plug it in to recharge if you can keep an eye on it.

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How to avoid buying a hoverboard that might explode

21981198458_474c7b266c_kBy Chris Perkins From Mashable

Hoverboards are easily the hottest toy of the holiday season, but getting one is, unfortunately, complex.

That’s because the rapid social-media popularity of these two-wheeled misnomers led to a huge boom in manufacturing that’s largely unregulated. A reporter with BuzzFeed visited Shenzhen, China, the city where hoverboards are made, to find hundreds of factories all cranking out a very similar product.

Western distributors purchase supplies of the boards, then deliver them to the U.S., Europe and elsewhere, often sourcing boards from various manufacturers. Hoverboards quite literally can’t be made quickly enough, which may to have led to some cost-cutting on the part of manufacturers. Batteries have been the primary issue.

Low-quality lithium-ion batteries and chargers can sometimes catch fire. That fact has led some airlines to ban them from certain types of luggage and to the seizure of 15,000 unsafe hoverboards entering the UK.

Just this past weekend, reports emerged of two hoverboard fires in New Orleans and Florida.

Still, hoverboards are surprisingly fun to ride, and there’s a 90% chance you know someone who wants one, so what to do? Unfortunately, there’s no hard-and-fast rule on which hoverboards might be dangerous, but there are some general guidelines you can follow to have the best chance of buying a hoverboard that’s safe.

Make sure you buy it from a reputable store
To cash in on the boom, scores of sellers offer hoverboards, but not necessarily all are reputable. For example, if you search for “hoverboard” on Walmart’s website, you’ll see a handful of different devices; however, when you specify you want to only see products offered by itself, only one hoverboard is available, the Razor Hovertraxs. It’s a similar story at Amazon.

If you’re buying a hoverboard from a store or seller you’ve never heard of before, excercise extra caution. Your best bet is to stick with sellers you know Your best bet is to stick with sellers you know, especially well-known brick & mortar stores.

Look for more well-known brands
There are hundreds of brand names attached to hoverboards currently, but some are more legitimate than others. Even though many of the major players are involved in a legal battle over who truly invented the hoverboard — and thus, who has exclusive right to produce it — any of the major manufacturers will likely provide you a better product.

Do a search to find out more about the company: Swagway and Razor, for example, have websites with legitimate customer-service information, whereas a search for WEECOO only turns up links to other Amazon listings.

There’s no guarantee that a Swagway, Razor, IO Hawk or Phunkee Duck hoverboard won’t have flaws, but there will be more accountability with those manufacturers.

If the price is too good to be true, that’s because it probably is
You don’t need to spend $1,800 on an IO Hawk, but if you see a hoverboard for $100 run away. $300 to $600 seems to be the sweet spot $300 to $600 seems to be the sweet spot for a device that won’t break the bank, but won’t also, you know, break.

In conclusion, be a smart consumer
Due to the murky origins of most hoverboards, you need to exercise caution and good judgement when buying one. It’s not like buying an iPhone directly from Apple with the comforting knowledge that the product was built to be reliable and has excellent customer support — buying a hoverboard means you need to be educate yourself a little more about the company selling it to you before you buy it.

Since there’s no definitive way of saying “this hoverboard is safe and this one isn’t,” follow these guidelines and trust your gut. If your gut tells you it’s sketchy, it probably is.


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