Hoverboard Hazard

By Jamila Mayfield | Contributor 

In the early 2000's when the Segway PT was introduced to the market, it seemed as if we had finally made it to the future. Generations before could only imagine the technology that would enable us to walk less and be closer to floating. The pricey ticket of the Segway PT left many people only dreaming of becoming part of future transportation. In 2015, the infamous Back To The Future year, America welcomed a new piece of technology that would roll us right into these future-dreams: the hoverboard. 

We saw people floating around on a two-wheeled device, making us finally feel as though maybe Marty and Doc was on to something special. The price on these fancy boards were cheaper than some iPhones; something that made the dream of ultimate laziness more accessible. People of all ages were excited to see their new hoverboards arrive just in time for Christmas. 

This hot-ticket item floated to the top of 2015's most wanted list, but suddenly gained a notorious repuatation. College campuses around the nation have banned these boards due to their uncontrollable danger. News channels and social media have repeatedly shown these boards catching fire without warning. It is rumored that the lithium ion battery in these devices are overheating and sparking internal fires. 

The nearly nation wide ban is not an attempt to rain on Millennial’s two wheeled parade; it’s simply a safety measure. These boards pose a serious threat to the safety to students, classrooms and facilities alike. Despite safety precautions being taken, college and universities are catching flack due to students feeling as though schools are imposing on their rights. 

With so many boards rolling off the shelves this past Christmas season, students may be upset that their new set of wheels won’t be put to much use around campus. Students who are caught with these banned objects on campus face the same criminal charges as a student found smoking in the dorms.  

This isn’t to say that such restrictions have put an end to students whaffing in the pungent odor of marijuana that clouds the airways of sealed dorm hallways every semester. Students will continue to use hoverboards off property and run the risk of catching fire.  

With the serious threat that these boards present, it is wise for students to respect the ban and leave boards at home. While 2016 could have been the year that we stopped using our legs, we will have to wait until the product sees safety improvements.