The three largest US airlines, American Airlines Group Inc, United Continental Holdings Inc and Delta Air Lines Inc, each said that they are banning hoverboards starting this week in carry-on and checked baggage out of safety considerations.

Hoverboards do not in fact hover, but are two-wheeled devices also known as self-balancing scooters or swegways. They have prompted a host of warnings from authorities, and not just because people may fall off them.

Earlier this year, police in Britain warned people it was illegal to ride the devices on both public roads and pavements, meaning people must stick to their own private land to try them.

Britain's National Trading Standards said this month 88 percent of 17,000 self-balancing scooters examined at UK entry points were deemed to be unsafe, with an increased risk of overheating, exploding or catching fire.

The UN aviation safety arm ICAO has proposed that when lithium ion batteries are transported as cargo, they should be no more than 30-percent charged to reduce fire risk.

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