Many consumers have been contacted they are part of a recall for unsafe Takata airbags in their cars. Recent news that the maker of these defective airbags, Takata, has filed for bankruptcy has some in this group alarmed and concerned.
Rest assured class action lawsuits are allowed to continue and if lawyers secure a settlement those in the class will still be paid.
Some consumers are frustrated their car dealership told them they do not have enough supply of replacement airbags. That is due to the large number of airbags being affected by the recall being in the millions.According to Consumer Reports the maker with the largest number of these airbags, Honda has already fixed 56% of the faulty airbags. The US government got involved due to the large number of consumers affected. Priority for getting replacement airbags was assigned as follows: first priority is to consumers with older model cars affected by the recall in warmer more humid climates. Lower priority is newer models in colder climates.
Think of it similar to the triage nurse in the emergency room. Some clients with more serious injuries will be seen before you if your issue is less severe or less life-threatening. This is frustrating, but is the compromise that has been reached to try to resolve this large-scale safety concern as quickly as possible.
Vehicles made by 19 different automakers have been recalled to replace frontal airbags on the driver’s side or passenger’s side, or both in what the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has called “the largest and most complex safety recall in U.S. history.” The airbags, made by major parts supplier Takata, were mostly installed in cars from model year 2002 through 2015. Some of those airbags could deploy explosively, injuring or even killing car occupants. They key to the defect relates to the way the airbag would inflate upon impact, a metal cartridge loaded with propellants, which in some cases has ignited with explosive force. If the inflator housing ruptures in a crash, metal shards from the airbag can be sprayed throughout the passenger cabin—a potentially disastrous outcome from a supposedly life-saving device. NHTSA has determined the root cause of the problem: airbags that use ammonium nitrate-based propellent without a chemical drying agent. As postulated early on, environmental moisture, high temperatures, and age as associated with the defect that can improperly inflate the airbags and even send shrapnel into the occupant. This is similar to how veterans might be injured not just by direct bullets but by sharp pieces near an explosion. To date, there have been 11 deaths and approximately 180 injuries due to this problem in the U.S.
Through various announcements, the recall has tripled in size in 2017. It is expected that the inflator recall will impact more than 42 million vehicles in the U.S., with the total number of airbags being between 65 and 70 million. If unsure if your car is part of the recall, check www.safercar.gov. If you have a product liability concern, call a personal injury lawyer Naperville IL trusts today.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from The Law Offices of Konrad Sherinian for their insight into airbag safety.