With gyms closed and forced isolation during the pandemic, exercise routines changed in favor of in-home equipment. Because of social distancing and an inability to spend time with friends and family, many gravitated to social fitness online, including both traditional fitness classes – like yoga and dancing – on zoom, as well as group exercise centered around new technology, like Peloton.

Peloton has enjoyed soaring popularity since its founding in 2012 and has become a commonly recognized household brand. After gaining a reputation with its stationary bike, Peloton introduced the Peloton Tread – a group fitness treadmill in 2018, and, until recently had two treadmills on the market: the Peloton Tread and the Peloton Tread+. While they look largely like regular treadmills, the Peloton version includes a built-in touch screen that allows users to participate in group fitness classes, and the tread is higher off the ground than most traditional treadmills.

On April 17, 2021, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) issued a warning about the Peloton treadmill after multiple incidents were reported in which small children and in one instance, a pet, were injured beneath the machine. The Commission determined that public safety was jeopardized enough to warrant public notice of the hazard. Less than a month later, on May 5, 2021, after 70 incidents had been reported, including the death of one child, Peloton, in cooperation with the CPSC, voluntarily recalled both the Peloton Tread and the Peloton Tread+. The recall is premised on a design defect in the machine that allows children and pets to be sucked under the treadmill with the potential for injuries to result.

Under the terms of the recall, owners of Peloton treadmills are being offered full refunds for return of their equipment and are alternatively being offered complimentary moving services to have their treadmill moved to an area of the house where it will be away from pets and young children.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission recalls various devices in an effort to maximize public safety in Massachusetts and beyond. Unfortunately, product recalls often do not happen until after a device has caused injuries that can be reported to the commission.

In certain scenarios, injured persons can bring claims against the manufacturers of defective products when they have been injured as a result of use. Those claims, known as “product liability” claims, typically involve intense investigations into the development and production of products. Complex analysis of product specifications and design consultations is an important part of a product liability claim. SUGARMAN’s trial attorneys have decades of experience in the investigation of product liability claims and understand the nuances of case preparation.

If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of a defective product, you may be entitled to compensation. To learn more about your options, speak to a SUGARMAN partner today by calling 617-542-1000 or email us at info@sugarman.com.