Exploding 'hoverboards'

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Exploding 'hoverboards'

Postby Irving » 11 Nov 2015, 17:54

From today's Times:

They are expected to be the must-have gadgets this Christmas, but after being banned from the streets, some Back to the Future-style “hoverboards” have now been branded a fire risk.

In the latest incident, a woman was taken to hospital in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, on Saturday after her self-balancing scooter caught fire.

Last month, London Fire Brigade issued a warning after attending two fires caused by the scooters, including one in Southwark that required four fire engines and 21 crew to tackle.

In another incident, a man in Morden, south London, had to flee his first-floor flat after his electric hoverboard caught fire while its batteries were being charged.

Earlier this week a shipment of 100 boards was intercepted at Glasgow airport owing to concerns over fire risks.

The popularity of the boards, which are legal to use only on private land, has soared as people aim to ride the pavement like the character Marty McFly in the 1989 film Back to the Future part II.

The self-balancing scooters are deemed too unsafe to ride on the road or pavement by police and possible fire risks could make them much more costly than their three-figure price tag.

In Kent, a grandfather was left with a £25,000 bill after his device caught fire and destroyed his kitchen. Paul Hodkinson, 57, had bought some of the scooters for his grandchildren, but on charging one, he found it went off “like a bomb”.

“We heard a massive swoosh. Through a glass door to the kitchen, we could see a bright yellow glow of flames,” he said. “For a moment, I froze — there was an instinct to try and put the flames out — but then I heard the hoverboard fizzing in the flames.

“The kitchen is blackened and the rest of the house is smoke-damaged. All we could do was salvage a few belongings. We’ve had to stay at my daughter’s.

“If one of the grandchildren had been anywhere near that scooter, they could have been killed. It’s lucky that both of us got out of the house when we did.”

Last month, a BBC Watchdog investigation found that many boards came with chargers which did not fit a British mains socket and plugs that did not have fuses.

Andy Vaughan-Davies, a fire investigations officer for London Fire Brigade, told BuzzFeed: “If people are going to buy one, they should go through a reputable retailer.”

Commenting on last month’s fires in London, Charlie Pugsley, head of fire investigation at the brigade, said: “The cause of both fires is still under investigation . . . but as both incidents involved personal transporters that were charging at the time we’d urge people to especially keep an eye on their devices whilst they are on charge.”

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Re: Exploding 'hoverboards'

Postby Burgerman » 11 Nov 2015, 20:20

Yes. Dodgy chargers, rubbish incapable BMS built in, and laptop style LiIon batteries. Not safe.

This is why I worry about all these Chinese scooters and folding wheelchairs using these cell types. I would certainly not use them in a powerchair.
There's a big difference between LiIon and LiPo cells and LiFePO4. The only safe cell is LiFePO4. Ask Boeing!

My room is full of lithium polymer, lithium ion cells. And as full battery packs. I keep them in a locking metal safe on my bench. Same with my older laptop batteries.
The two lithium powerchairs are just sat in the kitchen quite safely, and 82x 12Ah LiFePO4 cells are just in a cardboard box under my bed.
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