TAKATA UPDATE: More vehicles recalled, Takata has yet to identify problem
On Tuesday, December 2, airbag manufacturer Takata Corp. responded to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s ultimatum by refusing to extend their recall nationwide.
Takata has already recalled over 14 million vehicles globally, and 8 million vehicles in the U.S. from a number of states in regions with humid climates. Humidity is thought to be a major environmental factor that causes the airbag inflator to malfunction and explode, sending metal shrapnel into the cabin and causing serious injury. The NHTSA called for a nationwide recall of driver side airbags, as some of the injuries attributed to Takata airbags occurred outside the recall zone.
Takata defiantly maintains their stance that a nationwide recall is not warranted. On Wednesday, December 3, Takata publically acknowledged in a hearing before a House subcommittee that they have not yet definitively identified the root cause of the airbag defect.
Understandably, House lawmakers concerned with public safety are frustrated with Takata and their unwillingness to expand a recall on their airbags. Billy Long, (R-Missouri), likened it to driving while having a shotgun pointed at you.
Despite Takata’s stance, Honda (Takata’s biggest customer, according to USA Today) will expand the recall on its vehicles to include automobiles from all 50 states. Now, Honda will face the challenge of acquiring enough replacement parts to fix the recalled airbags. Right now, Takata cannot supply enough replacement airbags to keep up with the demand created by the recall. Honda will be working with other suppliers to try to solve that problem.
In the days following, Chrysler, Mazda, and Ford agreed to expand the recall on certain models of their vehicles as well.
If you or a loved one have been in a car accident and suffered injuries related to a possible Takata airbag defect, contact Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys at 855-866-5529
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