Off-Road Vehicle Safety

In November 2008 the Wall Street Journal reported that federal safety regulators are investigating the safety of the Yamaha Rhino. The Rhino has been linked to some 30 deaths. The Rhino, different from an ATV, does not fall under the safety regulations that ATV’s are subject to. The Wall Street Journal in a November 4, 2008 article, stated that the Rhino “is not subject to ATV safety standards because of design differences such as having a steering wheel…. But the novel off-road vehicles aren’t subject to the much-tougher standards for cars either.” There are no federal safety standards in place for Yamaha to conform to when designing the Rhino to make sure that it is safe for the public.

The Wall Street journal in the same article, reported that “Yamaha faces more than 200 lawsuits in state and federal courts, many alleging the Rhino’s design is unsafe.” In a follow-up article on April 1, 2009 the Wall Street Journal reported that “the Consumer Product Safety Commission said that Yamaha Motor Corp. has agreed to suspend the sale of its Rhino 450, 660 and 700 models.” Yamaha has also agreed to offer free modifications to Rhino’s already in service to make them less likely to roll over.

When the lawsuits against Yamaha began the Wall Street Journal reported that “Yamaha settled some but last year beefed up its defense and said it may start to fight rather than settle.”

If you or someone you know has been injured while operating a Rhino you may be entitled to damages. For more information on how to find an experienced attorney willing to fight for you please contact us for a free consultation.

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