Hoverboards, apparently, aren't as easy to navigate as Marty McFly led us to believe.
McFly, Michael J. Fox's character in the “Back to the Future” films, used a hoverboard to escape the clutches of Griff Tannen and his evil henchmen in the series' second movie. Of course that was a fictional, Space Age board that actually hovered above the ground. The boards that are marketed today as hoverboards—wheeled contraptions that are essentially hands-free Segways—have been causing a few problems.
Hospital workers in Florida said that the number of injuries reported from hoverboard use skyrocketed during the holiday season. The emergency department at Nicklaus Children's Hospital in Miami treated 54 children from Dec. 15 to Jan. 9 for injuries related to the machines. Forty-two of those were fractures. Some children even needed surgery.
Injuries from hoverboards have been on the rise. Hospital officials say the number of fractures has doubled since last year's Christmas holiday season. This year, a child suffered a spinal fracture, and others suffered facial lacerations, as well as head traumas with concussions and contusions.
The trend has federal agencies on watch, and the chairman of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said it would look into the safety of the electric scooters.
But broken bones aren't the only issue. Reports of some hoverboards bursting into flames has caught the commission's attention. The commission recommends charging and storing boards in an open area away from combustibles, and letting them cool for an hour after riding and before recharging. Some airlines are even banning hoverboards, saying the machines pose a fire hazard.