If you are starting to get frustrated with how often Takata Corporation of Japan ends up on front pages for its dangerous defective airbags, you are not alone. Upset motorists all across the country and the world have found themselves in even more danger due to the company’s handling, or lack thereof, of its wide scale recall. It has recently been discovered that rather than putting a different airbag type into each recalled vehicle, about 60% of them are getting “fixed” by being equipped with the exact same airbag.
When exposed to heat and humidity for too long or before a harsh impact, the notorious Takata airbags can violently explode, sending shrapnel into the driver or passengers. The defective airbags have been linked to more than 10 deaths, the majority in the United States, and hundreds of injuries. It was only after pressure from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) did Takata acknowledge the need of a full recall, which covered millions upon millions of the airbags installed within nearly as many vehicles of all sorts of makes and models.
(Please reference this list of recalled vehicles, comprised by the NHTSA, to see if your car could be posing a serious threat to your health: http://www.safercar.gov/rs/takata/takatalist.html)
History Repeats Itself
If the airbags are dangerous and everyone knows it, why are they being put into vehicles still? Some of which are actually fresh off the manufacturing lot, not due to the recall? A legal loophole has allowed Takata and some automakers to use a quick fix to save time and money.
According to research, the airbags are “most dangerous” after years of exposure to humidity and heat. Regulators must allow Takata and automakers to use the same defectively-designed airbags if they promise to recall them a few short years later; there is currently no law to prevent them from doing so. Fiat Chrysler, Mitsubishi, Toyota, and Volkswagen have all received criticism for admitted to using these airbags in new 2016 and 2017 models.
The decision to continue to use these lethal airbags is, put simply, asking for trouble and clearly negligent. If you or a loved one have been injured by a defective Takata airbag, you should contact Eliot Reiner, APLC. Our Sacramento product liability attorney can help you file a personal injury claim against the accountable party.