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Treetools pulls the plug on Petzl ZigZag sales

Richard Tregoweth - Friday, July 18, 2014

According to a Petzl representative, the worldwide return rate on the Petzl ZigZag is very low (1-2 units per 1000… and Petzl have sold tens of thousands around the world). The crack that appears in the top link represents NO risk to the user and all ‘problem’ ZigZags will be replaced under warranty.

All this may be true but Treetools cannot reconcile the fact that a PPE product is promoted and marketed as a ‘safe’ alternative to the humble Prussik when the product in question continues to fail in the field.

We say the Petzl ZigZag ‘fails in the field’ because Treetools return rate does not correlate with the Petzl’s worldwide figure of 1-2 per 1000 (Treetools return rate is much higher than Petzl’s).

Apparently the Petzl ZigZag problem is more prevalent in Australia and New Zealand?

Yes, kiwi climbers might be more aggressive in our tree climbing style but it is hard to believe the problem is regionally specific - we use the same climbing lines and hardware as everyone else in the world?

One possible reason for Treetools high return rate specifically is our proactive approach to the problem.

40% of Treetools returned ZigZags were due to us checking the ZigZag while in the field or in the shop – in these instances the owners of the device were oblivious to the problem until it was pointed out to them.

The high return rate of Petzl ZigZag through Treetools, let alone the obvious defect with the device itself, puts us in a compromised position.

Should Treetools continue to promote and sell a product we know to be deficient? (a cracked ZigZag would definitely not pass Petzl’z own gear inspection criteria).

The team at Treetools think the answer to this question is no.

Selling and promoting a PPE product, when there is a high likelihood for failure, goes against our basic instinct and the core philosophies of our business.

Therefore, as of today, Treetools will suspend sales of the Petzl ZigZag until the problem is resolved.

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