After Reports of Explosions, Hoverboards Put on No-fly List

By Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber covers U.S. news and stories relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. He is based in Maryland.
December 11, 2015 Updated: December 11, 2015

Delta, American, and United Airlines have banned passengers from bringing hoverboards onto planes following reports of explosions and fires.

“As cool as they are, there’s one big problem: they are not safe to transport on an airplane,” Alaska Airlines, another airline which moved to ban hoverboards last week, explained Thursday via its corporate blog.

“Poorly labeled, powerful lithium-ion batteries powering hoverboards are the issue,” Delta added in its own statement. “Delta reviewed hoverboard product specifications and found that manufacturers do not consistently provide detail about the size or power of their lithium-ion batteries.”

JetBlue, Hawaiian Airlines, and Virgin America have already banned the devices, while the fourth largest airline, Southwest, said they’ll still be allowed on board for now.

The moves follow the release of multiple videos and pictures from across the U.S. and Europe showing hoverboards bursting into flames.

The hoverboards have been catching on fire while being charged, while being ridden, and while standing still.

The fires and explosions have been blamed on the increasing flood of knock-offs targeting the hot market during the holidays. 

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is investigating the rising problem, as are authorities in the U.K. and Australia. 

“This is a high-priority investigation by the agency. We know how popular the product is. We know consumers are giving the product as a gift during the holidays,” commission spokesman Scott Wolfson told NBC this week.

“We are working all across the country to move our investigation forward as quickly as possible.”

Officials in the United Kingdom seized over 10,000 hoverboards during an investigation.

Meanwhile, announced that it will not sell any hoverboards as a precautionary measure.

Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber covers U.S. news and stories relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. He is based in Maryland.