Thought hoverboards were dangerous? You could be right

I knew there was a reason I didn’t get my daughter a hoverboard two years ago… and it wasn’t just that some of them had a knack for catching on fire.

This week the American Academy of Pediatrics released a study of emergency room visits caused by hoverboards and skateboards.

Hoverboards are attempting a comeback in the U.S., months after videos showing them bursting into flame went viral. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

Here’s some data:

  • In the first two years that hoverboards were sold in the United States, 26,854 people younger than 18 were treated in the emergency department for injuries related to the toys. That same study also looked at skateboard injuries as well and noted 121,398 kids were treated for skateboard injuries between 2015 and 2016.
  • Most of the injuries were for kids between ages 11 and 13.
  • Most of the injuries were to boys.
  • Only about 3 percent of the kids with hoverboard or skateboard injuries had to be admitted into the hospital.
  • Most of the hoverboard injuries happened at home, while the skateboard injuries happened in the street.
  • The most common area to injure was the wrist (19 percent) followed by the forearm (14 percent) and head (14 percent).
  • Most of the emergency rooms’ diagnoses were fractures (40 percent), contusions, aka bruising, (17 percent) and strains/sprains (13 percent).

What can you do if your child still loves her hoverboard or skateboard? Encourage protective gear such as helmets, wrist, elbow and knee pads.


Author: Nicole Villalpando

Nicole Villalpando writes about families in the Raising Austin blog and the Raising Austin column on Saturdays. She also offers a weekly and monthly family calendar at She tweets at @raisingaustin.

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