Most motorcycle accidents result from another driver’s negligence, bad road or weather conditions, or a biker’s carelessness. Sometimes, however, a defective part on a bike is to blame. Unfortunately, unless there was a product recall, it could be impossible to know a part is defective until it is too late. You might only find out when the flaw causes you to crash.
People who suffer losses because of defective products have a right to compensation. If you have been injured in a crash, a skilled motorcycle accident attorney could see if motorcycle defects and recalls in Jonesboro played a part.
Strict Liability for Manufacturers
If a product is put into the stream of commerce, consumers have a right to expect that it is reasonably safe when used as directed. Manufacturers, distributors, and retailers could be liable if an unsafe part was installed in a motorcycle and its failure led to an accident.
An injured biker must prove that the part or product was defective. If they can show that all identical products from a specific manufacturer had the same flaw, they could allege a design defect. If most of the identical products are fine, but the particular item installed in the bike was faulty, the plaintiff could allege a manufacturing defect. If the instructions or safety warnings were not adequate to allow the safe use of the product or part, then they could assert a labeling defect.
A plaintiff’s attorney must prove several other elements to win a defective motorcycle part case in Jonesboro. They must establish that the part was defective at the time of the accident and that the defect caused the injury. They also need to prove that the biker did not modify the part and was using it in a way that the manufacturer should have foreseen.
How Recalls Can Shift Responsibility
When manufacturers become aware of problems with motorcycle parts, they issue recalls. This allows the owners of the affected vehicles to take them in for replacement parts or repairs without charge.
Manufacturers use vehicle registration information to notify owners of a recall. If a part was the subject of a recall, an owner must bring the vehicle in for the recommended service. A failure to do so could make the vehicle owner responsible if the part later fails and causes a crash.
Georgia law does not allow plaintiffs who bear at least half of the responsibility for their injuries to collect damages from other negligent parties. If a manufacturer issued a proper recall for a defect and the local motorcycle owner failed to comply with it, the manufacturer could argue that the failure to comply with the recall was the actual cause of an accident. In that case, a plaintiff might not be able to collect damages.
Statute of Limitations
Georgia allows people two years from the date of their accident to bring a lawsuit seeking damages for personal injuries. This time is best used in preparing a strong case that will persuade insurers to make a reasonable settlement offer.
There is a wrinkle that could apply to some motorcycle defect cases. The so-called “discovery rule” says the clock begins running on the date the injured person discovered that a defective product contributed to their injury. This could be significant, as it might not be apparent immediately that a defective part caused a crash. However, the Official Code of Georgia Annotated §51-1-11(b)(2) says that regardless of the discovery date, an injured person cannot bring a claim if ten years have passed since the defective item left the factory.
Get the Latest News on Motorcycle Defects and Recalls from a Jonesboro Attorney
If you believe a product defect had a role in your motorcycle accident, do not try to handle it by yourself. Manufacturers vigorously defend themselves from these claims and you need a professional advocate who will not back off. A lawyer could provide clarity on motorcycle defects and recalls in Jonesboro, so call now to speak with one.