SAUSALITO, US ( Aug 4) - Attorney Mark Webb has filed suit against Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Dynacraft Industries Inc, claiming hundreds of accidents having been caused by defective bicycles.
Webb filed the civil action in Marin county in February, claiming hundreds of accidents had been caused by defective bicycles sold in Wal-Mart stores throughout the country. He named Wal-Mart Stores Inc., of Bentonville, Ark., and Dynacraft Industries Inc., of San Rafael, and argued that both companies knew the bikes they sold were unsafe and that disfiguring accidents had occurred.
"In America, a company gets to make a profit when it sells a product, but if that product is dangerous and they know that and their customers are children and they are getting hurt, they have to stop it," Webb said. "The only way to stop it is to go to court."
"I want Wal-Mart to admit that what they are doing is risking more kids," Webb said.
According to the lawsuit, Wal-Mart - the largest retailer of bicycles in the world - has sold more than 10 million bikes even though more than 200 riders have been injured because of defects.
All of the bikes involved carry the Next brand name and have quick-release front wheels, the lawsuit claims.
The bikes were imported by Dynacraft from China and shipped to Wal-Mart stores unopened and unchecked for essential components. The bikes are supposed to include warnings stating that the axle nuts or quick-release levers need adjustment and could cause accidents if they become loose, but the plaintiffs in the lawsuit say they did not receive any manuals or warnings. Most say they just wheeled the assembled bikes out of the store.
Webb also accuses Wal-Mart and Dynacraft of conspiracy, saying they "knowingly and wilfully conspired and agreed among themselves to commit fraud and deceit by concealing and attempting to conceal the dangerous and defective nature of these front wheel quick release bicycles."