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Denver man sues Specialized for $10 million in helmet product liability case

Published August 29, 2019

DENVER (BRAIN) — A 50-year-old Denver man is suing Specialized Bicycle Components for $10 million, claiming the helmet he wore when he crashed his bike was defective.

Specialized denies the claims; this week both sides asked the U.S. District Court in Denver to issue a protective order to prevent the public from seeing confidential trade information during the litigation.

According to his complaint, Victor Moreno said he was wearing a size XXL Specialized Max helmet model when he overcooked a corner while cycling in June 2017. Moreno said he tumbled and slid to the side of the road. His injuries included a skull fracture, scalp laceration and permanent brain injuries.

Moreno said he bought the helmet at Wheat Ridge Cyclery in Wheat Ridge, Colorado, in 2016.

"Mr. Moreno bought the helmet because it was one of the few designed to fit his head and because he trusted that it would keep him safe during typical bicycle accident scenarios," he said in the complaint filed in June. He is being represented by Dormer Harpring, LLC, a Denver law firm that specializes in personal injury litigation.

The complaint asserts that the helmet was sold with the promise that it met various safety standards, including Specialized's "more rigid criteria." Without specifying how, the complaint charges that Moreno's helmet "was not designed and manufactured such that it could comply with the requirements of its certifications and testing."

The complaint charges that Specialized made manufacturing and testing decision that "resulted in the helmet being cheap instead of reasonably safe during common bicycle accidents."

Among those decisions was the choice to not use MIPS technology on the model (In November 2018, Specialized announced that MIPS would be available in all its helmet models; the Max model has been discontinued).
In an August answer to the complaint, Specialized denied Moreno's allegations.

Specialized also filed a corporate disclosure statement with the court in early August as required by federal rules.

"Specialized Bicycle Components, Inc. (a nongovernmental corporate party) certifies that it is a privately held corporation, it has no parent corporation, and Merida Industry Co. Ltd., a publicly traded company on the Taiwan Stock Exchange, holds more than 10% or more of its stock," the disclosure reads in part.

The court has not granted the confidential information protective order that the sides requested earlier this week.  

Topics associated with this article: Lawsuits/legal

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