In a significant and unprecedented move, Onewheel, the popular electric skateboard manufacturer, has announced a worldwide recall of all its devices after a series of tragic incidents resulted in the loss of four lives. The recall, mandated by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) in the United States, encompasses all 300,000 Onewheel electric skateboards sold globally. The CPSC cited a serious risk of crashes leading to severe injuries, prompting this sweeping action by the manufacturer.
This recall not only affects customers in the United States but extends to Onewheel users worldwide. The UK government has assured swift action if necessary, emphasizing the gravity of the situation. Future Motion, the company behind Onewheel, has offered various options to affected customers, ranging from software updates to store credits.
The recall notice issued by the CPSC highlighted the alarming statistics: four reported deaths and numerous serious injuries related to Onewheel accidents between 2019 and 2021. These injuries included traumatic brain injuries, concussions, paralysis, fractures, and ligament damage. Shockingly, at least three of the fatal incidents involved riders who were not wearing helmets, underlining the critical importance of protective gear.
Additionally, Future Motion is facing legal challenges, with 31 lawsuits filed in the US by individuals who claim they fell due to unexpected Onewheel malfunctions. While these cases have yet to be tested in court, they add another layer of complexity to the ongoing situation.
The recall covers all models of Onewheel electric skateboards, including the original Onewheel, Onewheel+, Onewheel+ XR, Onewheel Pint, Onewheel Pint X, and Onewheel GT. While these devices can be legally used on private property, their use on public roads, pavements, and cycle lanes is prohibited in most places.
Several distributors, including The Snowboard Shop in the UK, have responded proactively to the recall. The store has removed Onewheel electric skateboards from sale and is diligently informing customers about the issue. While the products remain visible on their website, they are not available for purchase. Instead, interested customers can only inquire about the products, with the store providing detailed information about the ongoing recall.
In response to these concerning events, Future Motion has introduced an innovative safety alert feature called “haptic buzz.” This feature, available through a firmware update for specific Onewheel models, provides riders with alerts that they can both hear and feel, aiding them in recognizing situations that might lead to a crash. This, however, is limited to certain Onewheel GT, Pint X, Pint, and XR devices.
Owners of the original Onewheel and Onewheel+ electric skateboards, which are no longer in production, are offered a $100 store credit toward the purchase of a new device. Considering the retail prices ranging from $1,050 to $2,200, this credit aims to facilitate the transition to safer models.
In light of this widespread recall and the potential risks associated with Onewheel electric skateboards, users are strongly urged to follow the recommended safety guidelines, wear appropriate protective gear, and take advantage of the available updates to enhance the safety of their devices. The global community will undoubtedly be closely monitoring the developments surrounding this recall, emphasizing the paramount importance of consumer safety in the rapidly growing electric skateboard industry.