Segways Recalled

from the whoops dept

theodp writes “The maker of the Segway has agreed to recall the motorized scooters because riders have been injured falling off when its batteries are low. The Consumer Product Safety Commission announced the recall Friday, saying that three people had been injured. One suffered a head wound and needed stitches. The recall involves about 6,000 of the single-rider, two-wheeled scooters that can travel up to 12 mph. The company is offering a free software upgrade.” For a company that promoted just how safe these things were, and how difficult it was to fall off of them, this doesn’t look good.

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Comments on “Segways Recalled”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Wee-doo ... Wee-doo ...

I don’t see this is a crisis. All they need is a wheedling warning to inform the user that the battery’s low.

You know, like the one on my motorola phone, the one to which any motorola user is tuned to instantly recognize and appease, even if it’s like 3:30 and s/he’s fast asleep.

Segway users need to understand the risks that low batteries can bring, and be warned accordingly so they know when to bail out. To reiterate, though, this isn’t a massive product recall problem on the level of an exploding pinto; it’s just a tweak on the magnitude of a warning for people who forget to charge the bleedin’ things.

Hey, maybe they’ll do Fuel Cells for segways. Longer life, and simpler to fill at the pump!

Munich says:

Re: Depends how they handle it

I agree this shouldn’t be a big deal – the debug process is standard for pretty much all new devices, including new models of cars from the major manufacturers (which is why everyone is told to avoid buying the first year of a new model).

It’s not of the calaber of a major “crises management”, but even with this relatively small item they should follow the same rules: be upfront and truthful about it, issue an apology quickly and tactfully, correct the problem, take care of the people who were injured, offer anyone who is annoyed their money back (which is likely to be zero, but it is the thought that counts).

dorpus says:


This would be an ideal weapon for, say, a Palestinian in his bomber jacket.

If some psycho wanted to, he could probably attach a lance or sword to turn his vehicle into a SegBlade and go on a shish-kebab party in a shopping mall or school.

Or could we have a new generation of Hell’s Segways with loud engines attached to their Segways, tearing through sidewalks at 40 miles per hour? Or remote-controlled Segways with chainsaws and rockets, unstoppable by police?

Tim (user link) says:

It does have a warning

The problem is only when the battery is low and the segway does have a warning. There is a light that comes on in the handle-bars, an audible alarm, and the handle-bars shake to let the rider know the batteries are low. They are now just going to make it MORON proof by having the unit warn earlier (which means you’ll get less time on battery with it) and have it shutdown when anywhere near the battery level where it might cause the user to fall off.
I don’t see this as a big deal at all, just being mis-reported and hyped up as a big problem by the press – no surprise there!!

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