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The Government Is Warning Parents Not To Use Peloton's Treadmill Near Children

The US government says the "Peloton Tread+ poses serious risks to children for abrasions, fractures, and death." The company calls the warning "inaccurate and misleading."

Last updated on April 17, 2021, at 6:24 p.m. ET

Posted on April 17, 2021, at 3:46 p.m. ET

Peloton sign on building
STRF / STRF / Star Max / IPx

The US government is warning people against exercising on Peloton's treadmill when children are around or letting children near it when it's not in use, saying the equipment could pose "serious risks to children for abrasions, fractures, and death."

“Any consumer using the Peloton Tread+ who has or could have a pet, child, or object around this device, this warning is for you," said Joseph Martyak, director of communications for the US Consumer Product Safety Commission.

The company called the warning "inaccurate and misleading."

The warning came after Peloton CEO John Foley revealed in March that a treadmill, which the company calls a Tread+, killed a child.

"I recently learned about a tragic accident involving a child and the Tread+, resulting in, unthinkably, a death. 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," Foley wrote at the time.

And on Saturday the company said it learned in March that another "child had experienced a brain injury. Peloton spoke to the family who reported that and the child is expected to fully recover."

On Saturday the CPSC said it "is aware of 39 incidents including one death" and is "continuing to investigate all known incidents of injury or death related to the Peloton Tread+." Peloton said it's providing information to the agency.

"In light of multiple reports of children becoming entrapped, pinned, and pulled under the rear roller of the product, CPSC urges consumers with children at home to stop using the product immediately," the agency said, and included a video of a child's arms getting pinned under a Tread (warning: the video might be disturbing to some) while playing near the device.

"It is believed that at least one incident occurred while a parent was running on the treadmill, suggesting that the hazard cannot be avoided simply by locking the device when not in use," the CPSC said.

Peloton said the treadmill is safe if people follow the safety instructions and said the CPSC "has thus far refused to collaborate with Peloton."

"Peloton warns members not to let children use the Tread+ and to keep children, pets, and objects away from the Tread+ at all times," the company said in response.

It also said people need to remove the safety key when not using the treadmill, "precisely to avoid the kind of incident that this video depicts."

"Since receiving the March 18 message from Peloton, members have also shared other ways to keep children safe during home workouts. They schedule workouts during nap time or at night when children are asleep. Or they have a spouse or partner watch the children in another room. Some tell the company they use a baby gate to keep children, pets, and objects away from their fitness equipment," the company said.

The government said it is also aware of one pet that was injured by the exercise equipment.

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.