NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – One of the state’s top fire officials said he wouldn’t allow a hoverboard in his home, so should you?
They were one of the most popular Christmas gifts last year, but having a hoverboard in your home could present a major danger.
The first reported house fire in Tennessee believed to have been started by a hoverboard happened in Nashville. State fire officials are now sending a warning.
It happened at Brian and Megan Fox’s home on Radcliff Drive in Devonshire Manor in west Nashville on Jan. 9.
Underneath the snow-covered roof Tuesday afternoon, the damage was quite significant.
“It’s all going to be OK in the end, but the fact that a toy caused this kind of destruction in our lives… It’s just wrong,” Megan Fox said.
Fire officials told News 2 the homeowner’s teenage daughter and son were home at the time of the fire and heard a noise downstairs and decided to hide in case it was an intruder.
They said when the 16-year-old realized there was a fire; she kicked out a second story window and leapt into her father’s arms, who had arrived shortly after hearing the fire broke out.
She and her father were injured, but he still managed to get a ladder to his 14-year-old son, who climbed down to safety.
“The damage of the residence is expected to surpass over $1 million, not to down play the two teens who narrowly escaped,” said Davidson County Fire Marshal Steve Holt.
The fire marshal said friends of the family also purchased the same model hoverboard, a FITURBO F1, from the same batch on Amazon.com.
It caught fire, but luckily the fire was contained to the device, which was charging at the time.
“We strongly believe the hoverboards were responsible for these fires,” Holt said.
According to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, about 40 hoverboard fires have been reported across the country.
This was the first in Tennessee.
“The state fire marshal’s offices want to reaffirm our concerns about these Hoover Board devices and offer strong warnings to Tennesseans that used them to use them with caution,” said Gary West, Deputy Commissioner for the Department of Commerce and Insurance.
Fire investigators are not sure if Ratliff Drive home hoverboard was charging at the time, but what they were able to figure is the battery may have played a role.
“If you look closer where all the damage here is, the part that houses the lithium batteries, and we believe the lithium,” Dering said.
State fire officials are offering a few hoverboard safety tips.
They said do not leave it unattended while charging, do not leave it pulled into an outlet overnight, and most importantly, follow the suggested manufacturer’s guidelines.