October 24, 2014

Faulty airbags allegedly explode, severely injuring drivers

Takata_airbag_lawsuit_lawyerThe U.S. government is urging drivers of nearly 8 million vehicles to repair airbags. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration stated that inflator mechanisms in airbags, mostly made by Takata, can explode, spraying drivers with metal fragments when airbags are deployed, potentially causing serious personal injuries to the driver or even death. The NHTSA said that at least four individuals have died due to the faulty airbag problem.

Two U.S. senators have recently called for the NHTSA to issue a national recall of vehicles with faulty airbags. Senators Richard Blumenthal (Dem. – Conn.) and Edward Markey (Dem. Mass.) said in a letter that the recall should be immediate and not limited to states with humid climates. The NHTSA focused prior airbag recalls on states with hot, humid climates like Florida and Texas.

Rep. Fred Upton (Repub.-Mich.) indicated that he would request the NHTSA explain its handling of the Takata airbag recall. Rep. Upton is the chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

The Takata airbag recall follows the recent GM ignition switch recall. Defective ignition switches in GM vehicles have been linked to at least 29 deaths.

On Wednesday, the NHTSA released a list of 7.8 million vehicles that may contain defective Takata airbags:

BMW: 627,615 vehicles with potentially defective Takata airbags

2000 – 2005 3 Series Sedan
2000 – 2006 3 Series Coupe
2000 – 2005 3 Series Sports Wagon
2000 – 2006 3 Series Convertible
2001 – 2006 M3 Coupe
2001 – 2006 M3 Convertible

Chrysler: 371,309 vehicles with possibly

2003 – 2008 Dodge Ram 1500
2005 – 2008 Dodge Ram 2500
2006 – 2008 Dodge Ram 3500
2006 – 2008 Dodge Ram 4500
2008 – Dodge Ram 5500
2005 – 2008 Dodge Durango
2005 – 2008 Dodge Dakota
2005 – 2008 Chrysler 300
2007 – 2008 Chrysler Aspen

Ford: 58,669 possibly affected vehicles

2004 – Ranger
2005 – 2006 GT
2005 – 2007 Mustang

General Motors: undetermined number of vehicles impacted

2003 – 2005 Pontiac Vibe
2005 – Saab 9-2X

Honda: 5,051,364 potentially affected vehicles

2001 – 2007 Honda Accord)
2001 – 2002 Honda Accord
2001 – 2005 Honda Civic
2002 – 2006 Honda CR-V
2003 – 2011 Honda Element
2002 – 2004 Honda Odyssey
2003 – 2007 Honda Pilot
2006 – Honda Ridgeline
2003 – 2006 Acura MDX
2002 – 2003 Acura TL/CL
2005 – Acura RL

Mazda: 64,872 vehicles

2003 – 2007 Mazda6
2006 – 2007 MazdaSpeed6
2004 – 2008 Mazda RX-8
2004 – 2005 MPV
2004 – B-Series Truck

Mitsubishi: 11,985 vehicles

2004 – 2005 Lancer
2006 – 2007 Raider

Nissan: 694,626 vehicles potentially impacted

2001 – 2003 Nissan Maxima
2001 – 2004 Nissan Pathfinder
2002 – 2004 Nissan Sentra
2001 – 2004 Infiniti I30/I35
2002 – 2003 Infiniti QX4
2003 – 2005 Infiniti FX35/FX45

Subaru: 17,516 potentially affected vehicles

2003 – 2005 Baja
2003 – 2005 Legacy
2003 – 2005 Outback
2004 – 2005 Impreza

Toyota: 877,000 vehicles

2002 – 2005 Lexus SC
2002 – 2005 Toyota Corolla
2003 – 2005 Toyota Corolla Matrix
2002 – 2005 Toyota Sequoia
2003 – 2005 Toyota Tundra