Posted on behalf of Stephens, Anderson & Cummings on May 12, 2016 in Product Liability
A new recall order is greatly expanding the Takata airbag recall, already the largest auto safety recall in the history of the U.S. As many as 40 million defective Takata airbags are expected to be added.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has ordered airbag manufacturer Takata to recall up to 40 million more faulty airbags. While the total number of affected vehicles has yet to be announced, it is likely that the number of affected vehicles will be lower, as some models utilize more than one faulty Takata device.
Before this latest announcement, approximately 24 million U.S. vehicles made by 14 auto manufacturers were affected by the recall. Now, it is expected that nearly all previously untouched automakers will be impacted as well. The Takata airbag recall will now affect approximately 50 million total vehicles – experts say before it’s done, as much as 25 percent of all U.S. vehicles could be included.
Defect Caused by Humidity, Chemicals
The defective airbags have been shown to explode violently, sending shrapnel throughout a vehicle. Eleven people have been killed and more than 100 have been injured.
Initial investigations into the cause of the explosions concluded that high humidity could deteriorate the airbag inflator, causing it to explode violently when deployed. More recent investigations have also determined that the ammonium nitrate propellant that is used in the airbags also plays a role in causing the explosive deployment of the airbags. The company has agreed to transition away from using ammonium nitrate over the coming years.
If you have suffered serious injuries due to a defective Takata airbag, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Contact our product liability lawyers to learn more about your legal options.