Harley-Davidson Class Action
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High-Speed Wobble Defined
Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP represents motorcyclists against Harley-Davidson in personal injury lawsuits allegedly as a result of what are commonly referred to as "high-speed wobble" (or "tank-slapper") accidents involving Harley-Davidson motorcycles. High speed wobble motorcycle accidents typically involve shaking or instability in the front end of the motorcycle. In certain cases, the front wheel can thrash from side to side, something bikers refer to as a "tank slapper" because the handlebars suddenly seem intent on battering the fuel tank into submission, causing the driver to lose control of the vehicle.
Harley Cycles and High Speed Wobble
On September 13, 2002, the Raleigh, North
Carolina News and Observer reported ! that a lo cal police officer had l ost control of
his Harley-Davidson motorcycle after its front wheel began to wobble as he was passing a
tractor-trailer at 85 mph, and died. A spokesman for Harley's corporate office said the
company "is not aware of any issues with any of our motorcycles at this time."
The News and Observer, however, stated that other sources noted stability problems with the FLH series of Harley-Davidson, also known as the Electra Glide, Road King and Ultra Classic, which are widely used by law enforcement officers nationwide. "A Harley, when you get it to high speed, has what you call a high-speed wobble," Sgt. R.N. Stallings of the North Carolina Highway Patrol was quoted as stating. In an otherwise glowing article in 1999, Motorcycle Consumer News described "an oscillation in the chassis that keeps the bike from feeling steady, both while cornering and at elevated speeds." The writer attributed the problem to an offset between t! he front and rear tires. Riders of Harley motorcycles who suffered injuries allegedly due to high speed wobble and would like to learn more about their legal rights, please click here to contact an attorney at Lieff Cabraser. All messages and your personal information will be held strictly confidential.
About Lieff Cabraser
We are a national law firm with offices in San Francisco, California, New York, New York, Washington, D.C. and Nashville, Tennessee.
We are recognized for our successful prosecution of individual and class action lawsuits involving personal injuries and property damage due to defective products, ranging from faulty building and home products to faulty cars, tires and computer devices. Our clients in these cases have come from across America, including persons living in Alaska, Alab! ama, Arka nsas, Arizona, Californi a, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, West Virginia and Wyoming.
Currently, we are playing a leading role in litigation against Firestone and Ford Motor Company based on allegations that the companies failed to disclose risks of tire tread separation associated with the Firestone tires and the susceptibility for rollover accidents of the Ford Explorer.
Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP, Announces that Wisconsin Court of Appeals
Reinstates Consumer Fraud Class Action Against Harley-Davidson
MILWAUKEE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 14, 2003--
An Estimated One Hundred Thousand 1999 and Early-2000 Model Harley Motorcycles Are Equipped with Allegedly Defective Engines Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP, plaintiff's co-counsel in Tietsworth, et al. v. Harley-Davidson, Inc., and Harley-Davidson Motor Company, a consumer fraud class action lawsuit, announced that in a unanimous decision the Wisconsin Court of Appeals today reversed the trial court's dismissal of the lawsuit, finding that plaintiffs had properly alleged the necessary elements of claims under the Wisconsin Deceptive Trade Practices Act and for common law fraudulent concealment.
"We are gratified that the Court of
Appeals recognized the merits of our case, and thrilled that our clients and all of the
other consumers who bought and ride these motorcycles will have their day in court, and a
chance to show that they got something less than what they paid for," commented Lieff
Cabraser partner Lisa J. Leebove. "This is a tremendous victory for consumers. Now,
we can move this case forward toward what we hope will be a successful resolution for our clients and the class."
The lawsuit was brought by California resident Steven C. Tietsworth, Wisconsin resident David Bratz and three other residents of Wisconsin. All are Harley-Davidson motorcycle owners with 1999 or early-2000 models equipped with Twin Cam 88 or Twin Cam 88B (together "TC-88") engines. Plaintiffs allege that the TC-88 engine was defectively designed and potentially dangerous due to the propensity for premature cam failure, which causes sudden and total engine failure. This failure could allegedly result in economic and physical injuries, including out-of-pocket repair costs, property damages, death or serious injury. Plaintiffs allege that Harley-Davidson knew and knows about the defect in the engines, and even sells a $500.00 "fix kit" designed to remedy the problem with the engines. The Court of Appeals held that Wisconsin law does not require Harley-Davidson owners to wait until their engines fail before they can bring claims for fraud or deceptive trade practices. The Court of Appeals held that it was sufficient that plaintiffs alleged that they and class members either would not have purchased the defective motorcycles if Harley-Davidson had not concealed from them and the public the defect, or that they would have paid less for the motorcycles had Harley-Davidson disclosed the alleged defect. A copy of the appellate decision may be found at http://www.lieffcabraser.com/motorcycles.htm
It is estimated that over 100,000 model year 1999 and early-2000 Harley-Davidson motorcycles were sold with the allegedly defective TC-88 engine. These motorcycles include the Dyna Glide series (including the FXDX Dyna Super Glide Sport, FXD Dyna Super Glide, FXDL Dyan Low Rider, and FXDS-Conv Dyna Convertible), the FL Touring series (including the FLHT Electra Glide Standard, the FLHTC/FLHTCI Electra Glide Classic, the FLHTCUI Ultra Class Electa Glide, the FLHRCI Road King Classic, and the FLTR/FLTRI Road glide), and the Softtail series models.
-submitted by Dewayne.
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