Consumer agency warns against Peloton Tread+ use, as company pushes back – TechCrunch

by Joseph K. Clark

Almost exactly a month ago, Peloton CEO John Foley wrote an open letter about the company’s treadmill. “I’m reaching out to you today because I recently learned about a tragic accident involving a child and the Tread+, resulting in, unthinkably, a death,” it begins. “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.” Today, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission warned users to stop using the Tread+. Citing 39 incidents, including the death mentioned above, the CPSC writes, “The Commission has found that the public health and safety requires this notice to warn the public quickly of the hazard.”

Peloton followed up with its own strongly worded statement, “The company is troubled by the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s (CPSC) unilateral press release about the Peloton Tread+ because it is inaccurate and misleading. There is no reason to stop using the Tread+, as long as all warnings and safety instructions are followed.”

Peloton Tread+

The commission’s warning includes multiple injuries involving small children and a pet. Specifically, the note calls for users with children how to cease using the product, a more stern warning than the initial suggestions outlined by Foley back in March, who at the time told users to keep children and pets away from the system and store the device out of reach after use. Peloton has since added that there have been 23 incidents involving children, 15 with objects, and one with a pet, as the CPSC noted. The company said it had not previously revealed the specifics out of privacy concerns.

“If consumers must continue to use the product, CPSC urges consumers to use the product only in a locked room to prevent access to children and pets while the treadmill is in use,” the organization notes. “Keep all objects, including exercise balls and other equipment, away from the treadmill.” For its part, the connected fitness maker adds,

CPSC has unfairly characterized Peloton’s efforts to collaborate and correct inaccuracies in CPSC’s press release as an attempt to delay. This could not be farther from the truth. Peloton invited CPSC to make a joint announcement about the danger of not following the warnings and safety instructions provided with the Tread+, and Foley asked to meet directly with CPSC. The company has already urged Members to follow all warnings and safety instructions. Despite its collaboration offers and even though Tread+ complies with all applicable safety standards, Peloton is disappointed that CPSC was unwilling to engage in meaningful discussions with Peloton before issuing its inaccurate and misleading press release.

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