It seems like it’s been years since we first learned of the Takata airbag recall. That’s because it has been — a decade in fact. The first recalls occurred in 2008.
So far, almost 50 million airbags in cars, SUVs and trucks made by 19 manufacturers have been recalled for defective inflators. When the faulty airbags are activated, they can spew metal bits into drivers and passengers. At least 15 people have been killed as a result, and hundreds have been injured — and that’s just in the U.S. Those most at risk are in areas with high temperatures and humidity like we get here in Kentucky.
Despite the large amount of media attention given to the dangers of the airbags, it’s estimated that more than 26 million defective Takata airbags are still in vehicles today. Some of the vehicles are new to the recall. However, others are in vehicles that were recalled years ago.
The former head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) who now works for Consumer Reports says that while it’s consumers’ responsibility to get their airbags replaced, some manufacturers haven’t done enough to inform people of how dangerous these defective airbags can be. However Ford and Mazda have now warned consumers to stop driving certain pick-up trucks because of the danger posed by their airbags.
Consumers can find out whether their vehicles are under a recall order by going to the NHTSA website. Even if you’ve checked in the past and your vehicle wasn’t included, it’s wise to check back periodically or call a local dealer.
Many defective products don’t receive this much attention, and in some cases recalls are issued. Regardless of the situation, if you or a loved one has been harmed by a product that was defective or didn’t come with proper warnings, it’s wise to find out what your legal options are for seeking compensation for medical treatment and other damages.
Source: WEAR TV ABC 3, “Airbag recall goes on,” April 27, 2018