Concern over treadmills after product safety campaign

Published: 
10 May 2011

Treadmills being sold without adequate warning labels were a major concern following an intensive product safety campaign carried out by Western Australian Consumer Protection.

The three-month campaign from November 2010 to the end of February 2011 involved product safety officers visiting 119 retailers in the Perth metropolitan area and inspecting more than 5,000 products.

The focus for this campaign was on toys for children under 3 years old, bikes, aquatic toys, swimming aids and treadmills.

One out of ten treadmills inspected failed to display prominent warning labels which highlight the significant danger they pose to children.

Western Australia's Commissioner for Consumer Protection Anne Driscoll said the high number of accidents involving children and treadmills made the warning labels essential.

“On average, about a dozen children a year are seriously injured by friction burns and, in more severe cases, children have needed skin grafts and have permanently lost the normal use of their fingers and hands,” Ms Driscoll said.

“Consumers need to be cautious when using treadmills when there are children in the home.  The best solution is to keep the treadmill in a separate room that can be closed off to children, or use barriers to keep children away.  If not being used, treadmills should be unplugged from the power socket.”

The product safety crackdown was part of a national campaign involving the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission and other State agencies.  A number of unsafe bikes were discovered on sale in other States, but bike retailers in WA were given the thumbs up.

“Generally the campaign showed that retailers in WA were mostly compliant with product safety requirements and Consumer Protection will continue to monitor the marketplace to ensure that only safe products are offered for sale,” the Commissioner said.

Consumers in Western Australia who believe they have been sold an unsafe product, should contact Western Australian Consumer Protection on 1300 30 40 54 or email consumer@commerce.wa.gov.au

Contact details

General inquiries

Western Australian Consumer Protection 1300 30 40 54

ACCC Infocentre 1300 302 502

Media inquiries

Western Australian Consumer Protection media contact:

Alan Hynd

(08) 9282 0961 or 0429-078791

alan.hynd@commerce.wa.gov.au

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