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Trek Recalls Nearly 1 Million Bikes with Brake Defect After a Rider is Paralyzed

Apr 23, 2015

Trek Bicycle Corp. has announced the immediate recall of bikes with front disc brakes from model years 2000 through 2015. The recall affects about 900,000 bikes in the United States and 98,000 in Canada.

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Trek reports three accidents involving injuries. "One incident resulted in quadriplegia. One incident resulted in facial injuries. One incident resulted in a fractured wrist," the commission said.

Trek said an open quick release lever on the bicycle’s front wheel hub could come into contact with the front disc brake assembly, causing the front wheel to come to a sudden stop or separate from the bicycle, posing a risk of injury to the rider. "This recall involves all models of Trek bicycles from model years 2000 through 2015 equipped with front disc brakes and a black or silver quick release lever on the front wheel hub that opens far enough to contact the disc brake."

The bicycles were sold September 1999 to now, priced from $480 to $1,650, USA Today reports.

In a letter prepared in cooperation with the CPSC, Trek explained that "If the quick release is improperly adjusted or left open on a bicycle which also has a front disc brake, the quick release lever can become caught in the front disc brake assembly . . . If this happens, the front wheel could separate or come to a sudden stop and the rider could lose control of the bicycle."

Bicycle models with front quick release levers that do not open a full 180 degrees from the closed position, are not affected by this recall, the CPSC said.

The letter goes on to advise the rider to "always correctly adjust the quick release on your bicycle before you ride." The owner’s manual has detailed instructions for proper quick release installation and removal. The company directs riders who do not have an owner’s manual to see a local Trek retailer. The company said its web site contains videos demonstrating quick release adjustment.

Bicycle owners can take their bikes to a local Trek retailer for a free inspection to see if the bike has the dangerous combination, the company said.

Those who own an affected bicycle affected can obtain a replacement quick release for free through a Trek retailer, including free installation. In addition, the company will give the owner a $20 coupon redeemable through December 31, 2015 at an authorized Trek retailer. Owners who have any questions about the recall may call Trek’s safety and recall hotline toll-free at 800-373-4594.

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