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Harley Davidson Recalls and Motorcycle Accidents

Vancouver lawyers are aware of the alarming rise in motorcycle accidents and injuries in BC. ICBC statistics indicate that more than 1600 motorcyclists were injured in 2016, up from 1500 in 2015. Being involved in a motorcycle accident can be shocking and overwhelming, and unlike automobile accidents, motorcycle accident victims often have severe injuries to arms and legs, including loss of a limb.

Motorcycle accidents caused by manufacture or design defects
Many motorcycle accidents are caused by driver negligence, but others are caused by a defect in the motorcycle’s design or manufacture. For example, in May 2017 Harley-Davidson recalled about 57,000 motorcycles worldwide because an engine oil cooler line may not have been installed correctly. The oil line could come loose on the defective motorcycles, spewing oil into the path of the rear tire. The defect caused two crashes and one minor injury.

Harley-Davidson motorcycles are certainly not the only brand impacted by manufacture or design defects. All of the major manufacturers – including Suzuki, Honda, Kawasaki, and Ducati – have issued safety recalls in relation to defects in their motorcycles that increase the risk of a crash causing injury and/or damage to property. If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident and suspect a manufacturing or design defect may have played a part, it is critical to speak to a lawyer as soon as possible. Care must be taken to gather and preserve evidence and to investigate the cause of the motorcycle accident. Vancouver lawyers at Bronson Jones & Company LLP have experience dealing with ICBC while at the same time building a strong case against the motorcycle manufacturer.

Safety recall notices in response to known defects
Transport Canada responds to complaints regarding the safety of vehicles, including motorcycles, and then conducts its own tests and often consults similar data collected by its U.S. counterpart, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Manufacturers are legally required to inform owners if a safety-related defect is found in a model of motorcycle or tire by issuing a safety recall notice (also called a Notice of Defect or Notice of Non-Compliance). Safety recall notices are issued in response to a discovered defect such as a malfunctioning transmission or a faulty braking system.

A safety recall notice is an important step to prevent accidents and personal injury. With most recalls, the manufacturer will notify owners and then dealers will inspect and repair the defects free of charge. Of course, the notice system is not perfect – the motorcycle owner may have recently moved and the notice is sent to an old address, or the motorcycle is sold to another rider who is not made aware of the recall. For their own safety and that of their passengers, motorcycle riders should take the time to check for any safety recalls to their motorcycles and then have any necessary repairs done as soon as possible.

Where to check for safety recall notices to avoid motorcycle accidents
To stay aware of possible defects affecting motorcycles and tires, motorcyclists should:

  • Search the Motor Vehicle Safety Recalls Database to find any recall notices.
  • Search their motorcycle manufacturer's web site to find out, by using the 17-digit vehicle identification number (VIN), if their motorcycle is affected by a safety recall.
  • Call their motorcycle manufacturer's 1-800 number and speak with the customer service department if more information is needed.
  • Register with manufacturers and update contact information to ensure recall notices are received.
  • Subscribe to Transport Canada's web feed Motor Vehicle Safety Recalls for news releases.


Bear in mind that it may be as a result of an accident that a manufacturing or design defect is discovered, which in turn prompts a recall. If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, the fact that your motorcycle has not been subject to a recall does not necessarily mean that the motorcycle was free from defects. Thorough investigation will be necessary to determine if a defect caused the motorcycle accident.

Vancouver motorcycle accident lawyers can help build your claim
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident and you suspect a manufacturing or design defect may have been the cause, experienced Vancouver motorcycle accident lawyers at Bronson Jones & Company LLP can help you determine your next steps, provide you with important information, and advocate for you in your case. We have 13 offices across the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley and offer a free initial consultation. Contact our lawyers today at 1-855-852-5100.

Legal Guidance & More, from Injury to Recovery
Bronson Jones & Company LLP exclusively represents victims of motor vehicle accidents, and that’s all we do! Unlike other law firms which deal with everything from dog bites to divorce, Bronson Jones has built more than 30 years of trial experience and in negotiating fair settlements for clients injured in motor vehicle accidents.

We’ve also developed an extensive network of medical and occupational specialists, therapists, rehabilitation specialists, and others to help you recover and deal with the impact of your injury on your physical health, family life, finances and future. Additionally, such reports may be essential in the development of your case. If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, call any of the 13 Bronson Jones locations in the Lower Mainland for our expertise and advice. All of our cases are handled on a contingency (percentage) basis and you don’t pay until we collect.

From crash to recovery: what to expect from us.
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