A statement released by Duncan Gay, the Minister for Roads of the New South Wales government, urged shoppers to re-think their choices if they would be purchasing self-balancing hoverboards as gifts for the holidays, as the transportation devices have been deemed unsafe for the roads of the Australian state.
"Hoverboards are the hot ticket item on many Christmas wishlists, but we need shoppers to keep safety front of mind before they put their money down," said Gay in a statement posted on the official website of Transport for New South Wales.
However, unless Marty McFly comes back from the future and delivers the world actual hoverboards, the hoverboards that Gay is referring to are not the ones that were first portrayed in the "Back to the Future" movie franchise.
The hoverboards that Gay is referring to are the "contraptions that look like a skateboard with two wheels," or Segways that have no handles, the statement described.
Gay said that the transportation devices present several concerns for safety, beginning with the fact that they are motorized and can reach speeds as fast as 26 kilometers per hour but do not require the riders to have any proper training before using them. In addition, the so-called hoverboards do not feature adequate braking systems and do not have any warning indicators or lights, which mean that the devices will not be able to safely interact with other users of roads such as vehicles and pedestrians.
Gay also noted that the riders of the hoverboards are in danger when they are used on roads because of the lack of protection from the surroundings, including from other vehicles.
The New South Wales Minister of Roads said that the road safety specialists at the Centre for Road Safety are working with other experts across Australia to push forth laws and standards for safety concerning the hoverboards, so that users will be guided on where and how the personal electric transport devices can be used.
The Road Transport Act therefore states that hoverboards will not be allowed to be registered on roads in New South Wales. Riders that use their hoverboards on the roads of the state will be facing a fine of AUD $637 (USD $460), and on footpaths, a fine of AUD $319 (USD $230).