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Hoverboards - national interim ban

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Interim
A 60 day national interim ban on the supply of unsafe hoverboards came into effect on 19 March 2016. Hoverboards are also known as self-balancing scooters, gliders, or modboards.

The Minister announced a 30 day extension to the interim ban that came into effect on 18 May 2016.

Ban

As allowed under the Competition and Consumer Act 2010, the Minister for Small Business and Assistant Treasurer certified that the interim ban be imposed immediately.

Consumer Protection Notice No. 2 of 2016 outlines the certification.

Consumer Protection Notice No. 3 of 2016 prescribes requirements of this interim ban.

The interim ban notice has also been translated into simplified Chinese.

Extension of the interim ban

On 11 May 2016, the Minister announced a 30 day extension to the interim ban.

Consumer Protection Notice No. 5 of 2016 extends the interim ban period.

Second extension of the interim ban

On 13 June 2016, the Minister further extended the interim ban period. As a result, the interim ban will remain in effect until 16 July 2016.

Consumer Protection Notice No. 6 of 2016 extends the interim ban period.

Does this apply to your business?

This ban is relevant to anyone in the business of supplying hoverboards, including:

  • manufacturers
  • importers
  • distributors
  • retailers.

Complying with the ban

Hoverboards need to meet international or Australian or US safety standards for batteries and related circuitry outlined in Consumer Protection Notice No. 3 of 2016.

These standards are summarised below:

Requirement

UL option

IEC (or AS/NZS) option

Battery

Section 16 of UL 2272

-       Compliance with this section will in effect require full compliance with the UL 2580 battery standard for batteries used in electric vehicles

Full compliance with the:

-       IEC 62133 battery safety standard for portable applications

Battery control system

Requires compliance with the following sections of UL 2272:

-       Sections 11, 15.1, 15.2, 15.3, 15.4, 15.5, 23, 24, 26 & 27

-       These sections relate to safety controls for the battery system

Requires compliance with section 11 – Heating and section 19 – Abnormal operation (both as amended by Annex B Appliances powered by rechargeable batteries) of either:

-       IEC 60335-1 Household electrical appliances general safety standard

OR

-       AS/NZS 60335.1 Household electrical appliances general safety standard (which mirrors IEC 60335‑1)

These standards can be obtained from a range of suppliers including UL and SAI Global

Penalties and consequences

Supplying unsafe hoverboards contrary to the conditions outlined in the interim ban can make you liable for heavy fines and product recalls under the Australian Consumer Law. For more details, view Penalties and consequences.

Conference with suppliers

The ACCC hosted a conference on 11 April 2016 with hoverboard suppliers and electrical safety regulators to discuss the interim ban. After the conference the ACCC recommended that the Minister maintain the interim ban. The Minister accepted the ACCC recommendation to maintain the interim ban.

The Australian Government's rationale for the interim ban is outlined in a Regulation Impact Statement published on 18 March 2016 (see below). 

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