Peloton Is Officially Recalling All of Their Treadmills Due to Injury Risk
This comes after more than 70 reported incidents (including injuries and one death) and a warning from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission for parents and pet-owners to halt use of the treadmills entirely.
The Tread+, which was launched in 2018, is being recalled after reports of more than 70 incidents of adult users, children, pets, and/or objects being pulled under the rear of the treadmill, resulting in one child's death and 29 other reports of injuries to children. The newer Tread, which has only been available as part of a limited invitation-only release from November 2020 to March 2021, is being recalled because the console can detach and fall, posing a risk of injury to users; no Tread-related injuries have been reported in the U.S., but there have been reports of minor injuries such as abrasions, minor cuts, and bruises in Canada and the U.K.
Peloton has also halted the sale and distribution of their Tread+ for the time being. The recall comes just weeks after the CSPC issued a warning about the danger that the Tread+ poses to small children and pets, urging consumers to stop using the device entirely.
"The decision to recall both products was the right thing to do for Peloton's Members and their families," wrote Peloton CEO John Foley in their joint statement with the CPSC. "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+. We should have engaged more productively with them from the outset. For that, I apologize. Today's announcement reflects our recognition that, by working closely with the CPSC, we can increase safety awareness for our Members. 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."
In April, when news first surfaced that a child died in an accident involving the Peloton Tread+, Foley had responded with a letter: "While we are aware of only a small handful of incidents involving the Tread+ where children have been hurt, each one is devastating to all of us at Peloton, and our hearts go out to the families involved," he wrote, continuing on to implore Peloton Tread+ owners to keep children and pets away from their machines and to store the safety key out of reach when not using the device. (FYI — you can't turn on Peleton's treadmill without the safety key.)
Following this fatal incident, the CPSC launched an investigation into the equipment and reports of injuries caused by the Peloton Tread+ that have involved "children becoming entrapped, pinned, and pulled under the rear roller of the product." As such, the CPSC urged consumers with children and/or pets at home to "stop using the product immediately." (This video shows how it happened to one child; fair warning that some people might find the video disturbing.)
In response to the CPSC warning, Peloton issued a statement saying that, while the company cares deeply about the safety of its members, it was "troubled by the Consumer Product Safety Commission's (CPSC) unilateral press release about the Peloton Tread+ because it is inaccurate and misleading." They reassured members that there was "no reason to stop using the Tread+, as long as all warnings and safety instructions are followed," and reminded them that "children under 16 should never use the Tread+, and Members should keep children, pets, and objects away from the Tread+ at all times."
The company also claimed that it attempted to release a joint statement with the CPSC, which the agency rejected. "Peloton is disappointed that, despite its offers of collaboration, and despite the fact that the Tread+ complies with all applicable safety standards, CPSC was unwilling to engage in any meaningful discussions with Peloton before issuing its inaccurate and misleading press release," according to the brand's statement. (Related: The Best Peloton Instructor to Match Your Workout Style)
Clearly, the CPSC and Peloton eventually came together to release the joint recall statement, but previous statements from the brand made it clear that they didn't ever want it to come to that point. "You may also have read news reports suggesting that CPSC believes that we should stop selling or recall the Tread+," read a follow-up letter from Foley. "I want to assure you that we have no intention of doing so." CPSC recall requests are typically voluntary, but if a company refuses the voluntary recall, the agency can take legal action to issue a mandatory recall.
If You Own a Peloton Treadmill
So what does this mean for you if you're a Tread or Tread+-owner or have ordered either device? Even though they're currently being recalled, you don't necessarily need to give it up.
If you have a Peloton Tread+... First, you should immediately stop using it and contact Peloton, according to the CPSC. You'll be eligible for a full refund before November 6, 2022. If you return the Tread+ after that date, you'll receive a partial refund. If you don't want a refund — or to get rid of your Tread+ — Peloton is offering to move the device (free of charge) to a room where children or pets can't access the treadmill. They're also implementing software improvements to automatically lock the Tread+ after each use and prevent unauthorized access by assigning a 4-digit passcode that will be required to unlock the device.
If you have ordered or were hoping to order a Tread+, know that Peloton has stopped selling and distributing the Tread+ for the time being, and is working on additional hardware modifications, according to the CPSC.
If you have a Peloton Tread... You should stop using the device. If you'd like, you can contact Peloton for a full refund. If you don't want a refund, Peloton is offering a free inspection and repair that will secure the touchscreen to the treadmill to help prevent future incidents, according to the CPSC.
And if you must continue to use your machine against the CPSC's warnings, the organization previously stressed that you should use it only when alone (read: when loved ones and fur babies are not home), in a locked room, and away from any objects, such as exercise balls and other equipment. Finally, you should make sure to unplug the machine when you're not using it and store the safety key out of reach, as both Peloton and CPSC suggest.
This story originally appeared on shape.com