Although vehicle manufacturers have been the primary source of recalls in the past year, airbag manufacturer Takata Corp. is now at the center of an investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Over the past five years, the airbags have led to the recall of approximately 10 million vehicles. The most recently recall involves nearly 3 million Honda, Mazda, Chrysler, Ford, BMW and Nissan vehicles. Toyota also recalled more than 2.3 million vehicles just last month; more than 750,000 of these vehicles were in the U.S.
According to Takata, the airbags could rupture and send metal bits and debris flying inside the car. According to a Honda spokesperson, the company was aware of more than 30 injuries and two deaths in the United States related to Takata airbags.
According to The New York Times, one victim from Georgia was injured after the airbag malfunctioned and deployed. The accidental deployment caused metal shards to puncture her neck and carotid artery.
Takata makes up about 20 percent of the airbag market and they have been manufacturing airbags since the late 1980s. In the 1990s, recalls were made after Takata produced faulty seatbelts. On Monday, Takata said in a statement that they believe excessive moisture is to blame for the defect. Moisture and humidity could be seeping into the inflators and destabilizing the propellant inside. Ruptures have been reported in Florida and Puerto Rico.
The following vehicles have been affected by the latest recall:
- 755,000 Nissan vehicles including the Pathfinder, Cube and Infiniti F35 models; model years 2001-2003
- 160,000 Mazda RX-8 and Mazda6 models from 2002-2004
- 1.02 million Civic, CR-V, Odyssey and Element vehicles from 2000-2005
- BMW 3 Series from 2000-2006
- 2005-2007 Ford Mustangs
- 2005-2006 Ford GTs
- 2004 Ford Rangers
Vehicle manufacturers Ford, Chrysler and BMW have not released the number of vehicles being recalled nor has the company determined that a defect exists in their vehicles. However, they intend to notify the customers who may be affected and encourage them to have their vehicles checked.
If you or a loved one has been injured due to a defective airbag or if you have lost loved one due to a defective airbag accident, you may be entitled to file a claim for damages.
Contact The Eichholz Law Firm at (866) 947-7449 for more information on how we can help you get the justice you deserve.