Yet another blow for hoverboard makers! This time, it is severe and from China, where the manufacturers are concentrated and from where most of the hoverboard exports happen.
According to the state-owned Xinhua News Agency, Beijing and Shanghai have introduced new road traffic regulations that prohibit the use of hoverboards and Segways on its roads and bike lanes. Fines will be imposed on those caught using these self-balancing scooters on Beijing and Shanghai roads.
While hoverboards are becoming the most-popular gift worldwide, the manufacturers in China had been suffering blow after blow. In China alone, millions of them are sold a year.
Despite the boom, authorities have introduced the ban to prevent these electric scooters from causing traffic jams and accidents on the road.
Earlier this year, the US International Trade Commission issued an order banning virtually all imports of hoverboards into the United States. But this time, it has nothing to do with safety but patent claims. Most of the US hoverboard imports come from China.
Last December, over 60 airlines banned hoverboards from being taken on their flights—either as carry-on items or in checked luggage because of concerns about the scooters’ lithium-ion batteries, which are potentially combustible.
Several hoverboard explosions were reported last year, raising safety concerns. Some of them exploded while charging.
The latest shocker of Chinese ban comes when China’s fragmented and chaotic hoverboard industry is trying to clean itself up by forming an alliance.