Education

Miami-Dade schools may ban hoverboards

In this Oct. 21, 2015 file photo, a young man rides a hoverboard down a Manhattan street toward the Empire State Building in New York. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said the Friday, Feb. 19, 2016 that the hoverboards can be a fire hazard and will go after companies that make, sell, import or distribute hoverboards that don’t meet safety standards.
In this Oct. 21, 2015 file photo, a young man rides a hoverboard down a Manhattan street toward the Empire State Building in New York. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said the Friday, Feb. 19, 2016 that the hoverboards can be a fire hazard and will go after companies that make, sell, import or distribute hoverboards that don’t meet safety standards. AP Photo

Hoverboards have already been banned from dozens of college campuses, New York subways and all of Britain's streets.

Now, Miami-Dade County Public Schools may add itself to the place where the self-balancing boards aren’t wanted. School Board Member Raquel Regalado has proposed banning hoverboards on all school district property, citing “violent altercations” sparked by the toys.

“These things are dangerous,” she said.

Hover boards don’t actually glide on air, but rather, two wheels. They look like skate boards but are battery-powered and require even more balance. They are infamous for their fire-catching lithium-ion batteries (which has prompted an investigation by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission) and for all of the injuries caused by falling off of them. Just ask Miami Congressman Carlos Curbelo, who tried to ride his nephew’s hoverboard and wound up with his arm in a sling this past Christmas.

“Confirmed - the #hoverboard is for the kids,” he tweeted.

Regalado said she’s proposing the ban because a local principal was punched by a student when the principal tried to take away a hoverboard. She didn’t say where the incident occured. She’s also concerned about the toys bursting into flames “at any point.”

Miami-Dade school board members will discuss her proposal at a school board committee meeting on Wednesday, and are expected to take official action during their regular meeting on April 13.

Christina Veiga: 305-376-2029, @cveiga

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