The Takata airbag scandal dates to 2001. It wasn’t until 2008 that Honda began the first recalls, after reporting the issue to Takata. It took until June of 2014 for the NHTSA to open an investigation into the safety of Takata airbags. The next year, with six deaths linked to the airbags, Takata acknowledged that some of the inflators might be defective. It then agreed to recall some 32 million vehicles that were equipped with the defective airbags. Since, the recalls have grown to be the largest automotive recall in history and is only getting larger.
CBS Local Detroit reports on the latest recalls as well as future recalls to come.
The Takata airbags use a chemical called ammonium nitrate to deploy in an accident. This chemical can degrade, and the degradation happens faster in warmer, humid climates. This can cause deadly shrapnel to be hurled through the vehicle when the airbag deploys. This deadly shrapnel has killed 23 people worldwide and injured hundreds more.
The millions of vehicles recalled since the defect was discovered are now being managed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Just last year, class-action lawsuits regarding the airbags were filed against the manufacturers General Motors, Fiat Chrysler, Volkswagen, and Mercedes accusing the companies of knowing about problems with the airbag inflators years before issuing any recalls.
As of December 2017, automakers have recalled 50.36 million autos, but only 27.2 million have been repaired. 23 million still need to be replaced, according to the NHTSA website.
By the time the mess is expected to end next year, another 70 million more vehicles may be recalled.
You can check if your vehicle is affected by visiting the NHTSA website and entering your vehicle’s VIN number.
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