With the warmer weather emerging, people are getting out and on their bikes for fresh air and exercise. However, when bicycle components fail, serious injuries can occur. Bike components commonly malfunction due to design or manufacturing defects, which are typically referred to as “product liability.” Component failures on bicycles can include problems with wheels, forks, and frames.
Current bicycle recalls
The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) maintains a continually updated list of recalled products, with information on the safety risks and steps consumers should take if they own the product. The CPSC and all recalling companies urge consumers to stop using any recalled product immediately. This is even more important in the case of adult and children’s bicycles, where you might have the instinct to simply make a repair. Do not do this. You will need the damaged bike in its current condition as evidence of the defect.
The CPSC currently lists the following bicycles and accessories on its recall website:
- BMC Bicycles and Framesets – The fork steerer tube on the bicycles and framesets can crack or break during use, posing a fall hazard.
- VP Harrier and Giant Pinner Bicycle Pedals – The pedal body can separate from the pedal spindle resulting in a loss of balance, posing fall and injury hazards for the rider.
- Aeria Ultimate Carbon Aerobars – The bicycle aerobars can crack and break, causing the rider to lose control and crash.
- Trek Super Commuter+ Electric Bicycle – The front fender can fall onto the front wheel and stop the bicycle suddenly, posing a fall hazard to the rider.
Consumers can find information and remedies on refunds or replacements on the CPSC website. And, you may sign up for custom CPSC recall notices tailored to the products you use most.
Determining if you have a bicycle product liability claim
In Virginia product liability cases, you may secure compensation for your injuries if you can prove the manufacturer or company failed in their duty through:
- Negligence. When a company fails to take proper care in the design or manufacture of their product and that failure makes the product unsafe, they can be held liable for any resulting injury. This liability can extend to anyone in the product supply chain, including the product designer, parts supplier, manufacturer, or distributor. Product defects from negligence can occur at any time from design through sales.
- Breach of warranty. Purchase of a product provides two warranties – the express warranty and the implied warranty. Your express warranty is the product and safety information provided when you purchase the product from the retailer. The implied warranty is the implied promise to a consumer that they are purchasing a product free of safety hazards and physical risks.
Note that, unlike some other states, Virginia does not operate under the theory of strict liability.
The Richmond product liability attorneys at Phelan Petty can help if you or a loved one were injured due to a faulty bicycle part or component. To set up a free case consultation, give us a call today at 804-980-7100 or use our contact form to leave us a message.