The Takata airbag recall, the largest vehicle recall in US history, is about to get bigger. Ferrari, Fiat Chrysler, Honda, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Toyota and other car manufacturers are recalling an additional 12 million motor vehicles on top of the 40-plus million cars that have already been recalled due to defective airbags.
The problem with the Takata airbags is that they use ammonium nitrate, a chemical that can deteriorate in warm weather and subsequently explode. There have been several instances of these airbags exploding upon impact and spewing shrapnel into car accident victims.
The U.S. manufacturer that has been most affected by the Takata airbag recalls is Honda, which announced that it will be recalling more than 4.5 million airbag inflators from cars and motorcycles. Meanwhile, Fiat Chrysler said that it will be recalling another 4.3 million vehicles so that the company can replace the defective airbag inflators.
Why Is the Auto Recall Taking So Long?
The Takata airbag recall is taking a very long time and many auto industry observers are troubled by the fact that so many dangerous automobiles remain on the roadway. Although everyone involved seems to be aware that the cars pose significant health risks to drivers and passengers, the recall seems to be taking forever.
One of the problems with recalling so many vehicles at once is that it can be almost impossible for carmakers to quickly replace, or repair, the recalled cars. So the car manufacturers issuing the recalls will be using a “triage” system to replace and repair affected cars. Basically, cars in high-humidity and high-heat areas, like the Gulf Coast, will be prioritized over cars in cold-weather climates. That’s because the Takata airbags are more likely to become defective in warm weather conditions.
The recall will also be prioritizing older car models because researchers have found that it typically takes at least six years for ammonium nitrate, the chemical in the defective airbags, to deteriorate.
As a result of this staggered approach, the recall is expected to take several years to complete.
To learn more about the latest Takata airbag inflator recalls, view the Los Angeles Times article, “Largest-Ever U.S. Auto Recall Gets Bigger: 12 Million More Vehicles with Takata Air Bags Ordered Back.”
If you have been injured as a result of using a defective product, you need to talk to a qualified NJ personal injury and product liability attorney as soon as possible. The experienced product liability lawyers at Rudnick, Addonizio, Pappa & Casazza PC can help you secure compensation for your injuries. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation about your case.