CPSC calls Peloton Tread+ a danger to children and pets


The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has issued a warning to owners of the Peloton Tread+ following multiple incidents involving small children and an animal — and Peloton is pushing back.

Released on Saturday, the “urgent warning” from the CPSC is in response to reports of injury caused by the use of the Tread running machine. In March, Peloton itself confirmed that the exercise machine may have contributed to the death of a child, as well as advising of the CPSC’s investigation into the incident.

The commission is aware of at least 39 incidents involving the machine, including one death. The CPSC believes the device poses “serious risks to children for abrasions, fractures, and death,” and had received multiple reports of children “becoming entrapped, pinned, and pulled under the rear roller of the product.”

Consumers are advised by the CPSC to stop using the machine immediately if there are small children or pets in the home. Since one incident took place while a parent was running, the CPSC believes users cannot avoid its hazards by locking it when not in use.

The CPSC also released a video demonstrating the issue. The video, which some may find concerning, shows a child being dragged under the base roller, before escaping and walking out of the room.

For those who want to continue using the Tread+, the CPSC urges consumers to use it in a locked room, and to keep objects and other equipment away from the treadmill. When not in use, the users should unplug the Tread+ and keep the key in a safe place.

In the event of an incident, the CPSC requests owners to contact it to report what happened.

Despite the potential safety issues, the incident reports, and the death of a child, the CPSC is not issuing a voluntary recall of the device. It appears that Peloton has been resisting the notice’s issuance, as well as holding back from providing assistance to the agency at times.

According to anonymous sources of the Washington Post, Peloton had been negotiating with the CPSC over the wording of the announcement over the last week.

The CPSC also reportedly had to issue an administrative subpoena to Peloton to get the name of the child who died, as well as the contact details of the family, to conduct its investigation. Peloton claimed it was withholding the information to respect the privacy of its customers and the child’s family.

In its response to the CPSC’s announcement, Peloton characterized the press release as “inaccurate and misleading.” Insisting in a statement that the Tread+ is safe for use in their homes, Peloton goes on to say that the Tread+ can “pose hazards if the warnings and safety instructions are not followed.”

Peloton also says the Tread+ isn’t for use by children under 16, to not allow children to use the machine, and to keep children, pets, and objects away from the machine.

“Any owner of a treadmill – whether made by Peloton or not – should follow these warnings, as they are included in the applicable safety standards, which the Peloton Tread+ meets,” the response concludes.

The safety announcement is the latest issue facing Peloton over a period of a few days. On April 15, Peloton removed the ability to connect the Apple Watch to its Bike+ Bootcamp Classes, in part due to issues implementing Apple’s GymKit.

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