When most people hear the words “cycling accident,” a collision between a car and a bike are what come to mind. The fact of the matter is, most cycling accidents are solo accidents.
Regardless of whether the accident is a solo accident or a collision, however, some of these accidents result from the mechanical failure of one of the bike’s components due to a product defect.
When a product is defective, and that defect results in an injury or other loss, all parties engaged in the business of supplying the product for use or consumption by the public may be held liable. The liable parties may include the manufacturer of parts, the assembling entity, the wholesaler, the distributor, and the retailer. The applicable law of each state varies, but the three types of product defects that may incur liability in a products liability case are:
- Design defects: the injury was caused by poor design.
- Manufacturing defects: the injury was caused as a result of a defect in the manufacture of the product.
- Failure to warn: the injury was caused as a result of a product failing to be accompanied with proper instructions.
What to do if you have been injured by a defective cycling product
If you have been injured, and you believe your injury was due to a defective cycling-related product, keep possession of the product!
Seek prompt medical treatment for your injuries. This is proof that you were in fact injured, and the medical records generated by the medical provider will help establish the extent of your injuries. Have several photos taken, from different angles and under different lighting, as soon as possible after your accident. Keep a journal (injury diary) of your physical symptoms, starting immediately after the accident, and make entries every couple of days.
Preserve your evidence. If you have been injured, and you believe your injury was due to a defective cycling-related product, keep possession of the product! Your best chance for recovery requires proving the product is defective. This proof will require an engineering analysis by an expert who will need access to the product. Preserve all evidence in the exact condition it was in at the time of the injury. All elements of the crash must be preserved. Do not move, bend, take apart, or in any other way tamper with the evidence. Do not send any of your evidence to anyone other than your legal team.
Contact bicyclelaw.com or another experienced products liability attorney who understands bicycling as soon as possible after your injury. Products liability cases are complex, and require both experienced legal representation and expert engineering analysis of the defective product and the accident scene. Results will always depend on the facts of each particular case.
For more information
For more more in-depth information about defective products liability, see Bicycling & the Law.
If you have been injured or otherwise suffered a loss due to a defective cycling product, contact bicyclelaw.com for a free consultation with bicycle attorney Bob Mionske.