If your brakes fail while riding your motorcycle in Georgia, you could be facing a dangerous situation. Hopefully, your riding skills will enable you to get off the road and into a safe spot without any mishaps. If you should suffer injuries, however, the question of liability arises. Who is responsible for the pain and suffering, lost time from work and the cost of medical treatments that you might require? Depending on the circumstances, the liability may rest with you, your bike mechanic or the bike’s manufacturer.

In one such case, a Georgia postal worker suffered a catastrophic accident during the summer of 2013 while riding his 2006 Suzuki GSX-R1000 bike. Reportedly, the motorcycle’s brakes failed causing him to lose control of the bike and crash. The accident shattered his spine. As reported in the Motorsport Network’s Ride Apart, the injured motorcyclist filed a lawsuit against Suzuki claiming the bike’s defective brakes led to his long-term injuries and inability to return to work.

In an attempt to avoid liability for the crash and its debilitating outcome, Suzuki’s defense team argued that the rider’s recklessness caused the accident. In addition to providing a crash reconstruction expert to testify that the rider was at fault, they argued that the motorcyclist did not mention any brake failure issues when police arrived at the accident scene.

The jury, however, held the manufacturer liable and ordered it to pay the harmed rider and his wife $12.5 million in damages. Because the manufacturer issued a recall for that particular bike model shortly after the accident, the jury felt there was sufficient evidence that the motorcycle’s brakes may have been defective. Suzuki announced their recall of their GSX-R1000 bike only two months after the postal worker’s accident occurred. The recall covered 200,000 bikes manufactured between the years 2004 and 2013 and included the 2006 model the Georgia man was riding.

This information is provided for educational purposes, and should not be interpreted as legal advice.