CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas, Feb. 12, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Today Bob Hilliard filed a lawsuit against Harley Davidson for a defect of the brakes in their motorcycle, the 2008 VRSC Night Rod. His client, John Alexander Gifford, was traveling home from work in Austin, TX in December of 2016 when he applied his brakes, lost control of his bike and slammed into trees near the roadway. As a result of the accident Mr. Gifford has undergone over 11 surgeries and continues to suffer through immeasurable pain. Mr. Gifford’s Harley Davidson was just recalled for defective brakes.
Last week Harley-Davidson, less than a year after another large recall, announced a new recall of approximately 175,000 for malfunctioning and failing brakes.
The new recall (Harley-Davidson recall number 0171) affects every Touring, CVO Touring, and VSRC motorcycle built in 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011 with antilock brakes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). That includes over 30 Harley-Davidson models in total, including police models.
According to the recall “deposits” can form “on components within the brake system if the DOT 4 brake fluid is not replaced for a prolonged period of time beyond the two-year maintenance schedule.” If a motorcycle’s front or rear brake pedal feels “hard” (or cannot be activated at all) at startup or after an ABS event, it may already be affected by deposits in the bike’s antilock braking system.
Over 40 complaints — including three crashes and two injuries — gave cause to the NHTSA to pressure Harley-Davidson to declare a national recall. The agency had been investigating complaints about the problem since summer 2016.
Mr. Hilliard states, “Harley-Davidson was advised by NHTSA almost 6 months before this accident that there were failures occurring in this braking system at abnormally high rates. Instead of immediately contacting its customers, including my client, Harley-Davidson, the company, went into a CYA mode. It did all it could to avoid a recall, to blame its own customers, and to drag its feet on providing potentially lifesaving information to the owners. As a result, Mr. Gifford literally suffered the almost complete ripping off of his entire lower torso, requiring 11 surgeries to date, with more to come. His daily level of pain is excruciating.”
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Hilliard Martinez Gonzales LLP (HMG) specializes in mass torts, personal injury, product liability, commercial and business litigation, and wrongful death. For over two decades, Bob Hilliard’s firm has been appointed by Judge’s in Texas and around the country to lead class actions, including the single largest litigation in US history, GM’s ignition switch defect litigation. Bob Hilliard was tried over 100 jury trials and obtained the Largest Verdict in the country in 2012 and the #1 verdict in Texas.
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