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Those Hoverboard Things Kids Ride Around On Keep Exploding

Apart from being illegal to use in public in the UK, and the fact that some versions tend to explode while charging, hoverboards are great.

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You know those two-wheeled hoverboards, aka self-balancing scooters, you see people riding around on these days?

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Some variants of the device, which along with most versions are made in China, can overheat and catch fire while charging, the service said.

On 11 October, firefighters fought a blaze in a bedroom of a flat in Southwark after a motorised unicycle set on fire (above).

Days earlier, a man had to escape from the first floor of his flat in Morden, south London, after a charging hoverboard caught fire.

This is really heavy! 'Hoverboards' are catching fire while on charge #BackToTheFuture https://t.co/tV7g63JYNc

Seperately, the Daily Mail reported that a grandad from Kent was left with a £25,000 bill last month after a £300 hoverboard that had been left to charge set on fire and left his kitchen a charred mess.

Andy Vaughan-Davies, a fire investigations officer for London fire brigade, told BuzzFeed News people are buying cheap versions of the product via social media without knowing how safe they are.

"The concern is that if these devices are coming in through abnormal means then there are concerns over their safety," he said.

"The crucial thing is that if people are going to buy one they should go through a reputable retailer. If they go outside of that then there's no comeback."

Steve Curtler from Electrical Safety First told the programme: "People are definitely at risk from what we've seen, particularly the charger: There's no fuse, there's no protection, so it's just going to short-circuit, overheat, explode, and catch fire."

Patrick Smith is a senior reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Patrick Smith at patrick.smith@buzzfeed.com.

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