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Consumer Reports statement on Peloton treadmill safety hazards, child injuries, and new urgent warning

Consumer Product Safety Commission warns consumers to stop using the product immediately if they have children at home


WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Consumer Product Safety Commission today issued an urgent warning about Peloton Tread+ exercise machines, saying the treadmills pose “serious risks to children for abrasions, fractures, and death.” According to the CPSC, following “multiple reports of children becoming entrapped, pinned, and pulled under the rear roller of the product,” the agency is urging anyone with children in the home to stop using the treadmills immediately.


The CPSC said that it is aware of “dozens of incidents of children being sucked beneath the Tread+,” including one death and multiple injuries, and the agency is warning the public of the hazard while it continues to investigate safety incidents involving the product. The CPSC typically is unable to force companies to recall products without taking them to court. 


Consumer Reports, the independent, nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, said that while today’s urgent warning by the CPSC gives people information they need to keep their families safe, it also puts a spotlight on delays by Peloton and broader weaknesses in U.S. product safety laws.


“It’s outrageous that Peloton isn’t taking stronger action right away. These injuries to children – including a fatality – are every parent’s worst nightmare,” said William Wallace, manager of safety policy at Consumer Reports. “You’d think that the CPSC could easily order a recall in a case like this, but it can’t, thanks to laws on the books that put corporate public relations ahead of children’s lives. This warning by the CPSC indicates that Peloton is not putting safety first, and there’s little the agency can do about it right now beyond alerting the public.”


The CPSC’s warning follows initial reports of a child’s death linked to the Peloton treadmill, as well as a letter from U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) to the agency requesting a report on its investigation of the product, including any factors that have slowed or delayed the CPSC’s work. 


“Current federal law makes it too easy for companies to stop the CPSC from telling the truth and too hard for the agency to force recalls of hazardous products,” said Oriene Shin, policy counsel for product safety at Consumer Reports. “It’s vital for Congress to take action and empower the CPSC to fully carry out its mission. The CPSC is the country’s main product safety watchdog, and it must be able to take forceful action quickly, completely, and publicly when a product in the home puts people at risk.”


Consumer Reports recommends keeping children away from the Peloton Tread+ or any other treadmill, especially when it is in use. In homes where children live or may be present, CR advises removing the treadmill’s safety key when it is not in use and storing it separately. A treadmill is inoperable when the safety key is removed.

If you have had an injury or a near miss with a Peloton Tread+ treadmill, or another household product, you can report it at the public consumer complaint database, SaferProducts.gov. For more information about the CPSC’s warning and additional safety recommendations for treadmills, see today’s CR story, “Urgent Safety Warning Issued for Peloton Tread+ Treadmill.”





Contact: David Butler, david.butler@consumer.org


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Consumer Reports is an independent, nonprofit membership organization that works side by side with consumers to create a fairer, safer, and healthier world. For 80 years, CR has provided evidence-based product testing and ratings, rigorous research, hard-hitting investigative journalism, public education, and steadfast policy action on behalf of consumers’ interests. Unconstrained by advertising or other commercial influences, CR has exposed landmark public health and safety issues and strives to be a catalyst for pro-consumer changes in the marketplace. From championing responsible auto safety standards, to winning food and water protections, to enhancing healthcare quality, to fighting back against predatory lenders in the financial markets, Consumer Reports has always been on the front lines, raising the voices of consumers.