Peloton recalls treadmills after injuries and child’s death

Fitness tech company Peloton has recalled its treadmills after reports of injuries and one death involving the machines, sending shares in the company to a seven-month low.

The move comes more than two weeks after the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, a federal safety agency, urged people with young children or pets to stop using Peloton treadmills, following an investigation into the death of a child. There were 72 reports of adults, children, pets or objects being pulled under the rear of the Tread+ treadmill, the agency said.

Peloton had previously pushed back on the CPSC’s initial warning, calling it “inaccurate and misleading” and saying anyone over the age of 16 could continue using the Tread+.

Peloton chief executive John Foley apologised on Wednesday, saying the company had “made a mistake in our initial response to the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s request that we recall the Tread+”.

Foley added: “We should have engaged more productively with them from the outset. For that, I apologise.”

Under an agreement with regulators, Peloton is voluntarily recalling Tread+ and Tread treadmills and will offer full refunds to customers who want to return their machines. The Tread+ sells for about $4,300.

Owners have been advised to immediately stop using the treadmills. Peloton was working on additional hardware modifications, the CPSC said.

The agreement, which also requires that Peloton stop selling and distributing the treadmills in the US, was “the result of weeks of intense negotiation and effort, culminating in a co-operative agreement that I believe serves the best interests of Peloton and of consumers”, according to Robert Adler, CPSC acting chair.

Foley said the company was “committed to work with the CPSC to set new industry safety standards for treadmills. We have a desire and a responsibility to be an industry leader in product safety.”

Peloton, known for its stationary bikes and at-home cycling classes, introduced its treadmill in 2018. It announced last year that it was launching a cheaper version of its treadmill, the Tread, with a retail price of about $2,500.

Shares in Peloton fell 10 per cent to $87.08, down to levels last recorded in September.

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