WiredPRNews.com — Press Release Distribution Service — The Yamaha Rhino recall announced March 31, 2009 has left many Rhino owners with a lot of questions. Here are some frequently asked questions and answers – FAQS – about the Yamaha Rhino Recall:
Q: What models of Rhinos are included in the Yamaha Rhino recall?
A: All Yamaha Rhinos. All 450, 660 and 700 models are included in the Yamaha Rhino recall.
Q: Who made the decision to recall Yamaha Rhinos?
A: The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and Yamaha agreed there should be a recall of Rhinos after an investigation of the Rhino’s safety by the CPSC.
Q: What is the most important thing to know about the Yamaha Rhino recall?
A: That the CPSC says “Consumers should immediately stop using these popular recreational vehicles until the repair is installed by a dealer.”
Q: Why was a recall of Yamaha Rhinos necessary?
A: The recalled Yamaha Rhinos are unsafe and are prone to rollover accidents, and can cause death or serious injury to riders, even when the Rhino is driven carefully. Yamaha Rhino rollovers have caused deaths, amputations of limbs, and crushed arms and legs. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) examined more than 50 incidents involving 46 deaths in model 450 and 660 Rhinos. The CPSC said in its Yamaha Rhino Recall press release: “Of the rollover-related deaths and hundreds of reported injuries, some of which were serious, many appear to involve turns at relatively low speeds and on level terrain.”
Q: I thought my Yamaha Rhino was safe if I drove carefully and I didn’t try crazy stunts. Why should the Rhinos be recalled just because some people had accidents?
A: First, the Rhino was not safe, even for careful drivers. Its narrow wheelbase and high center of gravity make it unstable. You may not have had a rollover in your Rhino yet, but the CPSC found that many Rhino rollovers “involve turns at relatively low speeds and on level terrain.” In a September 2007 Rhino product guide, Yamaha admitted “Doing things with a Rhino that some people do for thrills in other vehicles (such as sideways sliding, skidding, fishtailing, or donuts) have led to side rollovers. These rollovers can result in crushed limbs and other serious injuries or death to drivers or passengers.”
Second, the Rhino’s design made it easy for riders to suffer serious injuries or death if the Rhino was involved in a rollover accident. The Rhino’s design allowed arms or legs to be crushed under the vehicle if it was involved in a rollover. Many riders involved in Rhino rollovers had to have multiple surgeries or have a limb amputated. Some riders were killed.
Q: Q: Is Yamaha allowing customers to return Rhinos for a refund?
Q: What are Yamaha Rhino owners supposed to do now that there has been a recall of Yamaha Rhinos?
A: Immediately stop using the Yamaha Rhinos, warns the CPSC. You can take your Rhino to a Yamaha dealer for free repairs. Once these repairs have been made to their vehicles, Rhino users should always wear their helmet and seatbelt and follow the safety instructions and warnings in the on-product labels, owner’s manuals and other safety materials. The Rhino is only recommended for operators 16 and older with a valid driver’s license. All passengers must be tall enough to place both feet on the floorboard with their back against the seat back.
Q: What repairs will be made to my Yamaha Rhino?
A: Yamaha’s repairs includes the installation of a spacer on the rear wheels as well as the removal of the rear anti-sway bar to help reduce the chance of rollover and improve vehicle handling. The Yamaha Rhino dealer will also install half doors and additional passenger handholds where these features have not been previously installed to help keep occupants’ arms and legs inside the vehicle during a Rhino rollover.
Q: Will Yamaha continuing selling Rhinos?
A: Yamaha has agreed to voluntarily suspend sale of Rhinos immediately until they are repaired.
Q: Is this just the beginning of an attempt by the CPSC or some other group to stop the sale of all side-by-side UTVs?
A: We do not believe that the CPSC or any other group wants to stop the sale of all side-by-side UTVs. Adults have the right to assume the risk of injury from a UTV accident, as long as they are fully warned of all the risks, and the vehicles are safe when they are used for their intended purpose. We believe that Yamaha designed a defective vehicle that could not be safely used for its intended purpose. We also believe that Yamaha failed to fully warn buyers of all the risks of the Yamaha Rhino.
Q: What about people who were killed or injured in Yamaha Rhino rollovers? Does the Yamaha Rhino recall provide any compensation for them?
A: No, the Yamaha Rhino recall does not deal with the issue of compensation for people who were injured or lost a family member in a Rhino rollover. People who were injured or lost a family member in a Rhino rollover will need to retain an attorney to help them collect compensation from Yamaha.
These FAQs About the Yamaha Rhino Recall were prepared by the ATV Attorney Alliance, an alliance of law firms across the U.S. for people injured in Yamaha Rhino rollovers or other ATV accidents caused by a defective product or someone else’s negligence.
For further information, contact the ATV Attorney Alliance. Press inquiries should request to speak with attorney Phillip Jauregui at 800-509-5357, or attorney Michael J. Evans at 205 (823-5151)..