Treadmill warning


The ACT Commissioner for Fair Trading, Mr Brett Phillips, is reminding consumers of the need to be aware of the dangers that some household items can pose to children.

Mr Phillips is issuing the warning following a recent incident in which a young Canberra child’s leg was caught in a treadmill.

The ACT Office of Regulatory Services is aware of children having suffered injuries from treadmills in the past, ranging from serious grazing and friction burns to having flesh removed from fingers and arms.  Children have also suffered injuries by standing on a moving treadmill deck. 

“Injuries have occurred while adults were using the treadmills as well as when children were left alone in rooms where the machines have been located,” Mr Phillips said.

“Physical fitness and the need to stay healthy are important to many Australians and the treadmill is an excellent way to exercise.  However, this type of equipment can be a real danger to small children.”

To help ensure your own safety and the safety of others, particularly children, who may come into contact with your treadmill, you should:

  • carefully read the operating and safety instructions before using the treadmill for the first time;
  • keep young children away from the machine while it is plugged in, whether it is in use or not;
  • keep the safety/operating key hidden away from children when the treadmill is not being used
  • ensure there is plenty of empty space directly behind your treadmill in case you stumble and fall off the back of the walking belt
  • adjust the speed of the walking belt in slow increments
  • wear appropriate walking or running shoes when using the treadmill
  • when not in use, switch off the power to your treadmill at the wall and unplug it.

“I would like to take this opportunity to remind parents and carers of the potential dangers associated with some household products,” Mr Phillips concluded.

Contact details

Media inquiries

Estelle Blackburn, Manager, Communications, Department of Justice and Community Safety (02) 6205 3758, or 0434 072 108

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