Product recalls: owners warned to fix air bags

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The product recalls involving defective air bags in automobiles has the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration warning owners to obtain necessary repairs.

The inflator mechanisms in the recalled air bags can rupture, resulting in metal fragments flying out when the air bags are deployed in crashes.

At least four deaths and numerous injuries ae believed to have been caused by the defect, including the death of an 18-year old girl from Oklahoma City.  The teen was driving a 2001 Honda Accord in a school parking lot when she hit another car.  When the air bag deployed, metal shards pierced her neck, causing her death.  Safety advocates say that 20 to 25 million American cars have the defective air bags.

The inflators involved in these product recalls were manufactured by Tokyo based Takata Corp.  Takata supplies seat belts, air bags, steering wheels and other automotive parts.  Approximately 12 million motor vehicles have been recalled around the globe due to the air bag issue.  Takata supplies air bags to Toyoto, Honda, mazda, BMW, Nissan, General Motors and Ford.  Earlier this week, Toyoto recalled passenger side air bags in 247,000 older models of Lexus SC, Corollo, Matrix, Sequoria and Tunda.

The most recent Toyoto recall impacts vehicles in South Florida along the Gulf Coast, peurto Rica, Hawaii, U.S. Virgin Islands, American Somoa, Saipan and Guam.  All of these area have high “absolute humidity.”  Currently, Toyota is investigating the role that absolute humidity may play in innflator failures.  The company has found a disproportional number of inflator failures in vehicles along the coasts.  Additional Toyota vehicles may be recalled.  A spokesperson for Toyota reported that the company is not aware of any accidents or injuries connected to the recalled Toyotas.

The year 2014 has seen a record number of automobile recalls by multiple auto makers, many of which are for serious safety issues.

If you or a loved one has been injured in an automobile accident that you believe was the result of a manufacturer’s defect, contact the product liability attorneys at Clark, Perdue & List.