This week the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration just issued a press release stating that the Takata airbag recall will grow to include an additional 40 million inflators. The move signals and expansion and acceleration of the recall. Prior to this week’s recall, 28.8 inflators were covered. The NHTSA’s move increases the recall significantly to include all Takata airbags without a chemical drying agent.
The NHTSA asserts that the most dangerous inflators have already been recalled, but the recent move suggests that more people may be at risk. If you’ve been injured due to an airbag, it may be a good idea to check with the government’s database of recalled vehicles to determine whether your car’s airbag was affected. Over 100 people have reported injuries from airbags, but many others may simply not be aware that their cars were subject to a recall. Personal injury lawyers will likely be monitoring the case closely, because the recall affects so many vehicles.
NBC News reports the Takata airbag recall as the largest in U.S. history. Before this week’s recall, 14 car manufacturers were affected. With the latest recall, virtually every major car maker will be impacted by the recall. Individuals who want to see if their car has been impacted can put in their car’s VIN number to safecar.gov.
By some estimates, approximately 1 in 4 cars on U.S. roads will be affected by the latest recall. This will likely bring major challenges to the auto industry and to the Takata manufacturer. As it stands, many drivers have reported having to wait for months to get the parts needed to fix their cars.
NBC reports that only one third of vehicles affected by the previous recall have actually been fixed.
Takata has already had to pay a $70 million fine for dragging its feet and downplaying the risk its airbags presented to the public. It faces many more fees if it fails to improve.
If your car is affected by the most recent recall, you should take action right away to fix your car. People are still being injured and killed by the defective inflator, with the airbag claiming a 111th victim in Texas. The 17 year old girl was involved in a minor accident, but was fatally injured from shrapnel released from the defective airbag.
Repairs for the defect are free, but not all car owners are informed when their car is subject to a recall. Used car dealers are not required to inform new owners about any potential recalls and letters that manufacturers send to inform consumers about a recall may not always reach second-hand owners.
Right now, the greatest challenge will be getting cars repaired and raising awareness. If you have been injured in an accident or believe you may have been injured due to defects in your car, you may be entitled to receive personal injury compensation to cover wrongful death, medical expenses, and other losses.
The Law Office of Johnson & Lundgreen is monitoring this situation closely.