Peloton recalls treadmills after child died

Consumers who purchased either treadmill are instructed to immediately stop using the machines and return them for a full refund

Chelsea Ritschel
New York
Wednesday 05 May 2021 18:26
Safety Regulators Warn Against Peloton Treadmill
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Peloton has announced voluntary recalls of both its treadmills, the Tread and Tread Plus, after the machines were involved in the death of a child and numerous other reported injuries.

The recalls come after the US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) warned consumers about the Tread Plus treadmill last month after a child died in March. Following the death, which Peloton’s CEO John Foley called a “terrible tragedy,” he separately urged Tread Plus users to keep children and pets away from the machines.

However, the exercise company had previously pushed back against recall suggestions, with Peloton calling the CPSC’s reports “inaccurate” and “misleading” and reassuring customers that they were safe to keep using the $4,300 machines as long as they were following safety measures.

According to the CPSC, in addition to the death of a 6-year-old child, who was “pulled under the rear of the treadmill,” Peloton received “72 reports of adult users, children, pets and/or objects being pulled under the rear of the treadmill, including 29 reports of injuries to children such as second- and third-degree abrasions, broken bones, and lacerations”.

On Wednesday, Mr Foley said in a statement: “I want to be clear, Peloton made a mistake in our initial response to the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s request that we recall the Tread Plus. We should have engaged more productively with them from the outset. For that, I apologise.”

Peloton’s Tread treadmill, which retails for about $2,495, has also been recalled due to separate safety concerns, with the CPSC citing multiple reports of the exercise machine’s touchscreen loosening and falling off.

“The firm is aware of 18 reports of the touchscreen loosening and six reports of the touchscreen detaching and falling,” the recall notice said, adding that there have been no injuries reported in the US, but that there have been “reports of minor injuries such as abrasions, minor cuts, and bruises in Canada and the United Kingdom”.

Under the terms of the recalls, consumers who purchased either product have been instructed to immediately stop using the treadmills and contact Peloton for a full refund.

For Tread Plus customers who do not want a refund, Peloton is offering the option of moving the treadmill free of charge to a room that cannot be accessed by pets or children, and is working to implement software that will automatically lock the device after use and which will require a four-digit passcode to unlock.

Additionally, Tread owners also have the option of a “free inspection and repair that will secure the touchscreen to the treadmill to help prevent future incidents”.

According to Foley, the decision to recall both machines was the “right thing to do for Peloton’s members and their families”.

“Today’s announcement reflects our recognition that, by working closely with the CPSC, we can increase safety awareness for our members,” he continued. “We believe strongly in the future of at-home connected fitness and are committed to work with the CPSC to set new industry safety standards for treadmills. We have a desire and a responsibility to be an industry leader in product safety.”

The exercise company, which is known for its stationary bikes and accompanying workout classes, first began selling treadmills in 2018.

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