Even when operated prudently, motorcycles are some of the most dangerous vehicles on the road -- providing very little in the way of protection for their operators while consistently overlooked or unnoticed by other motorists. For this reason, it is even more critical to ensure that motorcycles are designed to meet the safety needs of riders, and that motorcycle parts and components are responsive when called upon to maintain control of the bike or avoid an accident. If a design flaw or defective part is found to be the cause of a crash, the manufacturer and part supplier may be held liable to the victim for the cost of medical treatment and financial loss incurred by his or her injuries.
Design Flaws and Defective Parts
After being involved in an accident involving a motorcycle, it is essential to consider all of the potential causes of the incident, including faulty design or manufactural defects. Even if all of the parts performed as they were initially designed, it can be argued that the motorcycle manufacturer is liable if the bike design itself is unsafe or may contribute to increased chance or severity of injuries. Typical components that may fail and result in bodily harm include the following.
- Brakes— being unable to stop is equally as dangerous when on a motorcycle as when the brakes apply themselves too firmly, causing the bike to lurch or throw the rider.
- Wheel alignment— balance is crucial when riding a motorcycle and unaligned or misaligned wheels increase the potential of losing balance or control of the bike.
- Accelerator defects— just as coming to a lurching halt can be jarring, the unpredictability of a defective accelerator can cause a rider to lose control of his or her bike or be thrown to the ground.
- Faulty suspension— the suspension absorbs shocks from traveling over bumps or uneven terrain and can prevent accidents by helping motorcyclists maintain control of their bikes. When the suspension is defective, it can contribute to the loss of control preceding an accident, however.
- Kickstand failure— motorcycles are massive pieces of machinery that can cause serious injury when falling on top of a person. Defective kickstands can surprise motorcyclists when they believe their bikes are parked only to have them fall on them the moment they park and begin to walk away.
Motorcycle Recalls Due to Manufacturing or Design Defects
If the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration finds any reason to believe that a design flaw or defective part is a viable safety hazard, it may order the manufacturer to issue a recall of all motorcycles that were produced with the faulty component. When a recall is issued, the company must release a statement detailing the defect, the models that are affected, the types of accidents and injuries that have been caused by the defect and how the faulty component can be repaired. Also, the manufacturer must offer to provide replacement parts or to repair the affected motorcycles and provide information letting owners know where they can bring the bikes to have them fixed.
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, it is vital to preserve and record as much evidence possible to determine whether a defect, design flaw or an act of negligence was the cause of your accident. The Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC work with an extensive team of accident reconstruction specialists, medical experts and economists. Our expansive team can identify and prove the exact cause of our clients’ injuries, connect them with the care they need to treat their injuries and accurately establish the economic impact of their cases to recover every bit of compensation that they deserve.
Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with an attorney who has experience litigating product liability cases involving defecting motorcycles so that we can evaluate the details of your case, launch our investigation and answer your questions about your rights, legal options and what you can expect from the legal process. If for any reason at all, we fail to collect compensation on your behalf, our services will be completely free of charge.