Commission stops the importation of 1,400 Hoverboards at Dublin Port

November 26, 2015

 

  • Consumers and businesses warned of safety concerns associated with Hoverboards

 

26 November 2015: The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (“the Commission”) has suspended the importation of approximately 1,400 Smart Balance Wheels (Hoverboards) at Dublin Port. The consignment was prevented from entering the Irish market due to significant safety concerns which were identified through the Commission’s market surveillance activity.

At the end of October, the Commission became aware of reports of unsafe Hoverboards across Europe and initiated an investigation into the safety of these products. In early November, Customs Authorities notified the Commission about the arrival of a consignment of approximately 1,400 Smart Balance Wheels (Hoverboards). The Commission’s Product Safety Division examined a sample of the products and identified a number of serious safety concerns which resulted in their importation being suspended. The goods are due to be returned to the country of origin. Following this, the Commission opened further investigations and is engaging with a number of businesses who supply similar products, or who are planning to place them on sale in Ireland.

Isolde Goggin, Chairperson of the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission: “Our collaboration with colleagues in Customs has meant that these potentially unsafe products were not sold to consumers in Ireland. Following the examination, the Commission was concerned that consumers may be at risk should the AC adapter / charger or the battery pack overheat and potentially cause a fire. Our investigation is ongoing but at this point we are aware that similar products are on sale and we are investigating to determine that these products meet the relevant Irish and EU safety standards.

The Commission strongly urges consumers, who wish to buy a Hoverboard, to make sure that the manufacturer’s name or trademark is visible on the packaging and critically that it has a genuine CE mark. An example of a genuine CE mark is available on Consumerhelp.ie and it will indicate that a product meets Irish and European safety standards. We also advise consumers to always buy from a reputable retailer because if a fault does occur, the retailer is obliged under consumer law to offer a remedy.

We would also remind businesses that by law they are required to ensure that the products they sell conform to EU and Irish standards. Retailers and wholesalers should source products from reputable manufacturers and importers. They should also ensure that all the goods are certified as meeting both Irish and EU safety standards. If this isn’t the case, the Commission will take appropriate action to ensure compliance.”

 

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