With mild, warm weather year-round, Florida residents are no stranger to commuting by electric bike or scooter to enjoy the sunshine without compromising mobility and efficiency. Many of these electric bikes or scooters, however, are operated by complex technology and lithium-ion batteries, which can come with risks of the bike or its parts being defective and potentially dangerous. When a piece of machinery like an electric scooter or bike causes injury because it has defective components by design or manufacturing error, those who are responsible must be held accountable for any resulting damage or injury.
According to a recent news report, a lithium-ion battery from an electric bike or scooter self-combusted in an apartment building, which caused a four-alarm fire. Local authorities responded to the fire in the middle of the night, where it was only extinguished three hours later with one firefighter sustaining minor injuries in the process. After an initial investigation, fire marshals determined that the fire was caused by a battery that burst into flames in a restaurant on the ground floor of the building. The fire then spread vertically through the building, reaching as far up as to damage apartments located on the top floor. The fire remains under investigation.
Although it is unclear what the make and model of the electric bike or scooter was, there has been a steady increase in fires caused by electric bikes recently. In New York, more than 100 fires were caused by these devices, which resulted in 79 injuries and four deaths in 2021 alone.
With electric bikes and scooters increasing in popularity, it would be unsurprising if similar issues could also potentially affect Florida residents. To stay safe, it is crucial that you know what legal remedies and steps are available to you if you suffer an injury from a similar defective device.
In Florida, the law allows potential plaintiffs to hold designers, manufacturers, suppliers, and distributors responsible for any injuries that take place because of their products. In addition, family members are able to file such claims on behalf of loved ones if the dangerous product resulted in a family member’s death.
To establish liability, potential plaintiffs typically have a few options. They could assert that the manufacturer’s intended design of the product was unreasonably dangerous and failed to perform as a reasonable consumer would expect, which caused the injury to take place. Alternatively, potential plaintiffs could argue that a mistake was made during the manufacturing process that rendered a product dangerous when used for its intended purpose. Finally, a manufacturer’s failure to warn consumers about a product that was properly designed and manufactured could also be the basis for liability. In a failure to warn case, plaintiffs must show that with a proper warning or instructions, the risks the product posed could have been reduced or eliminated.
Do You Need a Florida Personal Injury Lawyer?
If you or someone you know was recently injured or killed by a defective product in Florida, contact the attorneys at Friedman Rodman Frank & Estrada today. Our lawyers fight for the injured and will work to get you the compensation you deserve. To schedule a free initial consultation, contact us at 877-448-8585.