Like any other product that a person buys, if they buy a bicycle, they expect it to work property. Most people think that a bicycle accident involves getting hit by a motor vehicle or hitting a pothole and crashing. Many bicycle accident injuries occur as a result of the failure of dangerously defective bicycle parts like forks, frames, handlebar stems, wheels, brakes or release hubs on front wheels. A failure of any one of these components can cause a bicyclist to be thrown straight over their bike’s handlebars. That might be the worst type of accident that a bicyclist has. He or she has no control over how they land or what they might land on.
If something like that occurs, and a bicyclist is severely injured or killed, any person or entity involved in the stream of commerce of providing that product to the injured consumer can be held strictly liable. They might include:
- Suppliers of component parts
- The entity that assembled the product
The general rule in California is that an individual who is seeking a damages award for injuries caused by a defective bicycle part can bring a product liability claim under one or more of three product liability theories. Those are:
- Design defects when all of the products in the product line are dangerously defective
- Manufacturing defects from the factory when only a few of the products in the line are defective
- Failure to warn of dangers when using the product
If a bicyclist can prove that he or she was injured as a result of a design or manufacturing defect or a failure to warn, all or any one of those entities in the stream of commerce that are connected with the product can be held strictly liable. It doesn’t matter if a company took every protective measure possible to prevent the defect from happening. Here’s where strict liability gets a little bit tricky though. The bicyclist must be able to prove that he or she:
- Used the product for its intended purpose
- Used it in a manner that was not likely to result in injury
- Used it when a third party was not the direct and proximate cause of the injury
Contact Bay Area Bicycle Law
If you’ve been injured in a bicycle crash anywhere in California, and you believe that a part design, manufacturing or failure to warn defect might have caused or contributed to your accident and injuries, contact us as soon as possible after the crash. We’ll give you our fullest attention. Of course we’ll have questions for you, but those questions are going to help us identify who made and sold the part that caused your accident and injuries. You and your family members don’t ever want to deal with the financial and emotional impacts of a severe injury that was caused by a dangerously defective bicycle part. Contact us right away if you believe that you’ve been injured by a defective bicycle part or component.