A month after revealing that a child died and several others were injured in accidents on Peloton treadmills, the at-home exercise company is fighting a federal safety agency’s request that it recall the dangerous products, and has delayed the agency’s investigation into potential safety problems. According to a news report in The Washington Post, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has taken the unusual step of issuing an administrative subpoena to require Peloton to disclose the name of the child who died and the family’s contact information so regulators can continue their investigation of what went wrong.
Danger and Warning
The Post reports that CPSC and Peloton are also clashing over whether the treadmills need to be taken off the market. Peloton and federal regulators had been involved in negotiations over the wording and timing of an agency alert to warn consumers about the potential dangers posed by the Peloton Tread Plus, a $4,300 exercise machine, which has soared in popularity during the coronavirus pandemic when nearly everyone has been unable to go to the gym to exercise.
A new safety warning from the CPSC was posted last week saying that the agency found that there are safety issues with the treadmills and it advises consumers to stop using them. Peloton responded with a statement on its website the same day deriding the CPSC’s alert calling it “inaccurate and misleading.” The company also said consumers have no reason to worry and don’t have to stop using the treadmills.
An official familiar with the CPSC’s concerns told The Post on condition of anonymity that the agency was alarmed by reports of children being pulled under the machines and suffering injuries that included broken bones and head trauma. The official also told The Post that this type of hazard pattern doesn’t exist with other treadmills.
A Peloton spokeswoman told the paper that the company doesn’t believe that a recall is necessary and that the treadmill is “safe for use when the warnings and safety instructions we provide are followed.” But, in addition to the one fatality, CPSC has found there were dozens of incidents involving Peloton’s treadmills, many resulting in serious injuries including one 3-year-old boy who suffered traumatic brain injuries.
The Need for a Prompt Recall
Based on this report and the CPSC’s warning, Peloton needs to step up and do the right thing here by issuing a prompt recall. It is distressing to see the nature and extent of injuries suffered by young children as a result of these products. If you or a loved one has been injured by Peloton Tread Plus treadmills, please contact an experienced product defect lawyer to get more information about pursuing your legal rights.