Bike Stem Break Causes Injury

Our Herndon Reston area injury law firm was recently contacted by Maryland attorneys regarding a client who was seriously injured when an aftermarket bike stem snapped.  The stem likely snapped due to negligent installation, a manufacturing or design defect, or some combination of these factors.  The attorneys for the injured bicycle rider were looking for a general forensic firm so that they could retain an engineering expert to explain and support their theories of the case.  At ABRAMS LANDAU, Ltd., is not uncommon for a case involving a serious bike crash to involve several theories as to what causes lead to the cyclist’s or peloton’s injuries.  Theories in the bike stem fracture claim, like the “working diagnoses” on the popular television shows “House,” “CSI” or “E.R.” include:

  1. Negligent installation” means that when the stem was attached to the bike, it was done so improperly, which caused the injuries to the purchaser or user.  
  2. Manufacturing defect” means that the bike stem was designed properly, and installed properly, but some step(s) during the manufacturing process caused product failure and rider or peloton injury.  An example is where the metal contains defects or is not heated/cooled to the correct temperature and thus is not as strong as called for in the bicycle design specifications.
  3. A “design defect” means that the bicycle stem was negligently designed, such that even if correctly assembled, it would still break and cause harm to the ultimate user.

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