CPSC Warns Consumers of Peloton Equipment Dangers

Recently, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) warned consumers concerning the dangers of the Peloton interactive tread machine. This was based on multiple incidents involving small children and a pet injured under the treadmill. These occurrences required the CPSC to warn of this hazard as the health and safety of the public was at risk.

Incidents of Injuries Are On the Rise

Presently, the CPSC is aware of 39 incidents involving one death. It believes the treadmill poses serious risks to children for abrasions, fractures, and death. Because of this potential for injury, the CSPC is requesting all users to stop using the machine immediately. There is also one incident that occurred while a parent was using the machine. This suggests that the hazard cannot be avoided by simply locking the device. After the recent death of a child, the CPSC issued a federal safety recall of the treadmill. Peloton has vigorously denied the recall.

Will Peloton Equipment Be Recalled?

Both sides are at odds as to whether the machine should be taken off of the market. In response to the recall, Peloton has stated that the press release is inaccurate and misleading. There is no reason to stop using their treadmills. The treadmill is safe to use when the warnings and safety instructions are followed. It argues that improper use is the culprit. The machine is designed to be used by people 16 or older. Anyone under 16 or pets, are to be kept clear of the machine. Due to these positions, what are the options if someone is hurt?

Is Peloton Liable for Injuries Caused Involving Peloton Equipment?

Peloton could be sued under product liability law depending on the State law where the injury occurred. These laws differ from jurisdiction to jurisdiction but typically provide injured people legal recourse for a dangerous product. The machine is required to meet the ordinary expectations of the consumer. As such, if the machine has a defect or is dangerous, it does not meet the consumers expectation. Other parties besides Peloton could also be liable for the injuries for the defective machine. For example, if there is a manufacturing defect, the manufacturer could be held liable. In that case, strict liability would apply.

Product liability refers to either a manufacturer or seller being found liable for placing a defective product into the stream of commerce. Peloton, as the seller of the treadmill, could be held liable as part of the distribution change. There is no federal product liability law. These claims are based on state laws and brought under can be brought under additional theories of negligence, strict liability, and breach of warranty. There are also State commercial statutes that may apply. As to product defects, the victim would usually have to prove that the machine was defective and that the defect made the product unreasonably safe. The defect maybe by design, manufacturing, or marketing.

As to defenses, Peloton might argue that the victim misused or altered the machine, or did not heed the warnings. These cases are quite complex and expensive. Proving the case will require experts. In addition, each state has its own set of laws requiring an experienced personal injury attorney to assist the victim.

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