HOUSTON, June 11, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Bailey Cowan Heckaman PLLC has filed a second products liability lawsuit against Future Motion, Inc. over claims that the company's allegedly defective Onewheel transportation device caused the death of a San Diego man when it abruptly lost power and nosedived mid-ride.
The lawsuit, filed in San Diego County Superior Court, claims negligence on the part of Silicon Valley-based Future Motion and alleged serious defects associated with its Onewheel device caused the victim's death.
Bailey Cowan Heckaman raised similar claims in a wrongful death lawsuit filed against Future Motion in May 2020. That case, which was brought on behalf of the family of a Texas father who died from injuries allegedly sustained after his Onewheel unexpectedly lost power and nosedived, is currently pending.
Suit Claims Onewheel Defects Caused San Diego Man's Fatal Crash According to court documents, the latest lawsuit stems from an accident in August 2020. The complaint states that the decedent had been riding his Onewheel XR around his San Diego-area neighborhood when the device suddenly shut off and nosedived.
This allegedly caused the Onewheel board to "violently and unexpectedly" slam into the pavement and throw the decedent to the ground. The man suffered severe head trauma resulting in traumatic brain injury, hemorrhagic contusions, and skull fractures, among other injuries.
He was transported to Scripps Memorial Hospital in San Diego, where he languished in a coma for nearly three weeks before succumbing to his injuries.
Plaintiffs Say Defects with Onewheel "Pushback" Feature Can Lead to Nosedives In its complaint, Plaintiffs allege that Future Motion was negligent in the design, manufacture, and marketing of its Onewheel device. The suit also brings claims of strict liability, failure to warn, and violations of the California Business & Professions Code for downplaying risks associated with the Onewheel and misleading consumers into believing it was safe for ordinary use.
These claims mirror those brought in BCH's previous wrongful death action and concern alleged defects that are claimed to make the Onewheel inherently dangerous. This includes the Onewheel's ability to provide riders with a "pushback" sensation, which is allegedly designed to warn riders that they're nearing the device's limitations but instead can compromise the device's ability to help the rider balance and lead to an unexpected shut off and nosedive. As the lawsuit claims:
"Once the motor's resources reach a critical point, the motor's normal ability to help the rider balance disappears, and the rider experiences an unexpected violent nosedive. Often, this will feel to the rider like the motor suddenly cut out or shut down."
The lawsuit alleges that because Onewheel pushback can be influenced by factors such as rider weight, tire pressure, wind direction, rider stance, battery level, grade of incline or decline, and velocity, it is nearly impossible to predict when or what will cause a nosedive. This is allegedly true of velocity pushback, which can occur at speeds lower than the maximum due to the above factors, and pushback that can occur when riders are ascending or descending, which can be difficult for riders to discern from the feeling of natural resistance caused by an incline or decline. According to the lawsuit:
Not only is it prohibitively difficult to determine when nosedives/tailspins/shut-offs will occur, but the result of such unexpected, unpredictable and undiscernible events almost invariably cause the rider to be ejected or fall from the board, resulting in severe injuries or, as in this case, death. A Onewheel nosedive or shut-off is not a small event as it might be with any other type of vehicle. The front of the board violently slams into the ground and then the rider is inevitably thrown downward and forward, often leading with their heads.
BCH is continuing to investigate potential claims from victims who have suffered harm in Onewheel accidents due to abrupt power shut offs, nosedive, and other issues related to Onewheel pushback.
Bailey Cowan Heckaman is Houston-based trial practice that fights for victims and families nationwide in complex civil claims. Backed by top-rated attorneys, the firm has secured thousands of favorable results for clients in cases involving defective and dangerous products, serious injuries, and wrongful death. For more information, visit www.BCHLaw.com.