Like other motor vehicles, a motorcycle should be built to the standard duty of care to safeguard the rider. Unfortunately, thousands of riders are injured or killed in motorcycle accidents each year. Many of these accidents occur because of a negligent driver or rider error. Others result from motorcycle manufacturer or design defects. When motorcycle defects are identified in the United States, the manufacturer initiates a recall.
Learn more about these often-deadly manufacturing or design defects and what steps you can take if you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident.
Each time you decide to ride a motorcycle, there’s a risk that you could be injured or killed in a serious motorcycle accident. Statistics show us that the motorcyclist is at about 27 times’ greater risk of dying in a collision that the driver or passenger of a car.
The fatality rates associated with motorcycle accidents continue to rise. Since 1999, accidents resulting in death have more than doubled. Although many road hazards are present for motorcycle riders, including inexperience or lack of riding skills, visual recognition, and speeding accidents, many serious motorcycle accidents are caused by manufacture and design defects.
Motorcycle Manufacturer Duty
If a motorcycle or motorcycle part is determined to be defective, a recall is issued by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) or by the manufacturer itself. At that time, the manufacturer files a report that indicates the specific safety-related defect(s) in comparison to the federal motor vehicle safety standards, a proposed remedy, the specific vehicle/equipment, events that prompted the recall, and the recall schedule.
Manufacturers must take steps to alert owners of the recalled motorcycle equipment or motorcycle. It must merge its records of purchasers with available state DMV information about current registered owners. The manufacturer must also alert the distribution chain of the equipment when this equipment is determined to be defective. Federal law requires the motorcycle manufacturer to do so without passing on its costs to consumers.
Historically, motorcycle products that fail are often associated with the rear wheels, brakes, toe clips, chain, and shock absorbers. NHTSA estimates that three percent of all motorcycle accidents throughout the United States are due to vehicle failure.
A dangerous or defective product causing injury is covered under product liability laws. The laws determine who’s responsible for the defective product(s) and establish rules about how to try these cases:
- Product liability law holds the manufacturer liable for putting the defective product or equipment into the consumer’s possession.
- Based on the distribution chain, there may be multiple responsible parties for the motorcycle accident. Liability for the accident may be placed with any party involved in the product’s distribution, including the manufacturer, a component parts’ manufacturer, an assembler, a wholesaler, or a retail outlet that sold the motorcycle to the owner.
There are typically three kinds of defects the motorcycle owner may learn about when discussing product liability, including:
- Manufacture defects. These result when the product is in the process of manufacture or assembly.
- Design defects. These defects occur in the product before it’s manufactured.
- Marketing defects. Inadequate safety warnings, poor labeling, or inaccurate/insufficient instructions may be marketing defects.
The manufacturer may try to defend itself against these defects. Since product liability laws establish the rules for you to recover compensation, you must have evidence concerning how the accident or injury occurred. Our team of experienced motorcycle recall attorneys will help you on the road to recovery. Contact Proner & Proner Attorneys at Law to discuss how to get the compensation you deserve at 800-776-5291 now.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney/client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.