Six displaced after hoverboard causes fire in Penn Township PA


Six people were displaced after a basement fire in Penn Township that was started by a hoverboard, officials said.

Firefighters were called to the scene of a reported house fire in the first block of Mt. on Friday, April 19, around 11:41 a.m. Royal Avenue in Penn Township, according to York County 911 records.

No one was injured in the fire, said Tony Clousher, chief of Hanover Fire and Rescue Services, but six people were displaced, including four adults and two teenagers.

Hannover EMA and the Red Cross are helping the six displaced people, Clousher said. The home suffered significant smoke damage, in addition to some fire damage in the basement and first floor, he added.

The resident of the home was alerted by smoke detectors and evacuated other individuals from the home, Clousher said.

When the resident further investigated the smoke conditions, they opened the basement door and discovered heavy black smoke and popping sounds. They then closed the door, which contained the fire, and called 911.

Firefighters arrived and laid hose lines in the house, quickly bringing the basement fire under control in less than 20 minutes, Clousher said. Some of the fire extended into the basement ceiling, burning through numerous electrical lines and causing some damage to the first floor.

Officials determined the fire started from a toy hoverboard, Clousher said.

According to Clousher, the hoverboard had been left untouched in the basement for eight months when it caught fire.

A major problem with these toy hoverboards, which contain lithium batteries, is that you don’t know where they were manufactured, Clousher said.

In the United States, Clousher explains, regulations control the quality assurance of lithium battery products, but often these devices are purchased from foreign manufacturers, where quality assurance standards are often not the same.

“If it’s broken or you’re not using it, get it out of your house,” Clousher recommended to anyone who owns similar lithium battery products such as e-bikes, hoverboards and e-scooters, citing the risk of the batteries deteriorating and catching fire.

Harrison Jones is the Hanover reporter for The Evening Sun. Contact him at [email protected].