Safe Ride by Spencer Kuvin, Motorcycle Attorney

Recall Awareness and Product Defects

 Wednesday, August 03, 2011

SAFE RIDE....

Leopold~Kuvin, P.A. is committed to promote public safety.  We have observed the tragedies of our motorways, and our first priority is your safety.  We urge drivers to be aware and mindful of motorcyclists on the road….and wish all motorists a safe passage home.  


Recall Awareness and Product Defects


Consumers should have an expectation that the vehicle they purchase, whether it is an automobile or motorcycle, is safe for its intended use.  The manufacturers of these products make millions of dollars every year selling their vehicles to consumers.  As a consumer, you should have an expectation that at least some of the profits made by these companies is going toward safety in design.  A safe vehicle is one that takes into account the regular use of the vehicle, and engineering it to prevent potentially fatal crashes when possible.  Certainly, the consumer should be able to assume that the product itself, through a defective design or failure, will not actually cause a catastrophe.


Product manufacturers all know that recalls can be an expensive and time consuming process.  It also generates bad publicity for the manufacturer, because the consumers start to question the quality of the product if it continually is being recalled for issues.  As a result, the manufacturers are generally hesitant and slow to order a recall.  In spite of this, when a product continues to have failures, and potentially causes injuries to consumers that have purchased the product, a recall is ordered.  


This month, unfortunately, there are numerous recalls of popular motorcycles and motorcycle parts, these include:


Kawasaki Motorcycle Recall

Kawasaki has issued a recall of approximately 2,500 motorcycles due to a defect in the electrical wiring system.  Certain 2011 Ninja ZX-10R/ZX-10R ABS bikes may contain a wiring malfunction that can cause a short between wires and the frame or within wires.  If this occurs while the bike is in operation, it can suddenly stall, significantly increasing the risk of harm to the rider.  

 

The recall schedule has not been confirmed, but once issued dealers will inspect the vehicle and perform the necessary service free of charge.  Owners may contact Kawasaki Consumer Services Department directly at 1-866-802-9381. Additional details can also be found by referencing NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 11V363000.


Indian Motorcycles issues Two Recalls 

Polaris has issued 2 recalls affecting approximately 700 Indian Motorcycles, model year 2009-2011.  The first recall is issued for failing to conform with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 123 regarding "motorcycle controls and displays."  The recall concerns the side stand which may not fold rearward and upward as required, affecting driver control and increasing the risk of crash.  

 

The recall is expected to begin on or around August 2011 and dealers will inspect the motorcycle and perform the necessary service free of charge.  Owners may contact Indian directly at 651-408-7579. Additional details can also be found by referencing NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 11V344000.

 

The second recall affects the Body Control Module which can malfunction if the headlight switch is slowly moved from one position to another (high beam to low beam).  During the transition, both beams may be on simultaneously causing the module to interpret a system overload that automatically turns off the headlight.  In the event this occurs, driver visibility is impaired, increasing the risk of crash.  

 

The recall is expected to begin on or around August 2011 and dealers will inspect the motorcycle and perform the necessary service free of charge.  Owners may contact Indian directly at 651-408-7579. Additional details can also be found by referencing NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 11V343000.

   

Yamaha Brake Defect

Yamaha has issued a recall of approximately 260 FJR1300 motorcycles due to a break light switch defect.  Certain 2011 bikes manufactured between January 2011 and April 2011 may contain a malfunction that prevents the brake light from illuminating when the front brake is applied.  In the event this occurs, other drivers will not receive the proper alert indicating that a rider is slowing down, increasing the risk of crash and injury.  

 

The recall is expected to begin on or around July 2011 and dealers will inspect the motorcycle and perform the necessary service free of charge.  Owners may contact Yamaha directly at 1-800-962-7926. Additional details can also be found by referencing NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 11V340000.

   

Ducati Equipment Defect 

Ducati has issued a recall of approximately 964 Diavel Motorcycles due to an equipment defect.  Certain 2011 bikes manufactured from September 23, 2010 through May 12, 2011 may contain a malfunction that can cause the rear license plate holder to loosen during operation.  If this occurs, the plate could interfere with the motorcycles rear wheel rotation, increasing the risk of crash.  

 

The recall is expected to begin on or around July 2011 and dealers will inspect the motorcycle and perform the necessary service free of charge.  Owners may contact Ducati directly at 1-800-231-6696. Additional details can also be found by referencing NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 11V336000.



Owners are encouraged to contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153) or go to www.safercar.gov, with any questions or concerns surrounding these or any other recalls or safety campaigns.  I encourage all riders to pay attention to product recalls to ensure a safe ride.  


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