More than 15,000 'hoverboards' have been seized as UK ports and airports by Trading Standards over safety fears.

The hoverboards are widely expected to be this year's 'must have' Christmas gift, but Trading Standards said they were at risk of overheating, catching fire and exploding.

In October, London Fire Brigade said three fires were caused by hoverboards in the space of just 10 days.

Trading Standards said around 88% of the 15,000 devices seized were found to be faulty. It said that many had plugs without a fuse, faulty cables or chargers that were far more likely to burst into flames.

"We suspect that most of these products are being imported for onward sale domestically as Christmas approaches. We urge consumers to be on their guard when purchasing these products," said Lord Harris, the chair of National Trading Standards.

The majority of those seized are understood to have come from East Asia, and do not comply with European safety regulations. More often than not, those seized were unbranded and were likely to have been bought by small, independent retailers