Fourteen automakers have announced even more vehicle models to add to the already massive Takata defective airbag recall list. This comes a month after Takata added an additional 3 million more vehicles which have faulty airbag inflators.
These latest recalls now become part of what has become the biggest recall in U.S. history, with approximately 42 million vehicles containing the defective airbag manufactured by 19 different automakers recalled.
Takata used the chemical ammonium nitrate to trigger a small explosion and fill the airbags quickly in the event of a crash. What the company failed to consider is that ammonium nitrate deteriorates when it is exposed to high temperatures and humidity. This causes the metal canister it is stored in to explode, spraying hot shrapnel into any occupants. This dangerous defect is responsible for more than 200 people getting injured, and just last week, an airbag explosion claimed the life of the 22nd victim. The defective airbag issue has resulted in a criminal conviction, fines, and bankruptcy for Takata.
GM Avoids Recalls
One major automaker who has not recalled any vehicles that have Takata defective air bags is General Motors. For the third time in three years, the company has petitioned the federal government to avoid recalling approximately 7 million pickup trucks and SUVs manufactured between 2007 through 2011 that contain the Takata inflators.
The company filed their first petition in November 2016 and their second petition in January 2017, but the government has yet to rule on either one. Until the government does make a ruling, GM is not required to issue any recalls.
In its latest petition, GM states that the front passenger inflators were custom-made by Takata and have stronger steel end caps and larger vents than the other inflators. GM claims in their petition that none of these inflators have exploded in any testing GM has performed.
GM is also the company that covered up a defective ignition switch defect that was responsible for killing 124 people and ended up costing the company more than $2 billion in criminal fines, wrongful death and injury settlements, and repairs to vehicles.
The company also disclosed on its petition that it has not set aside any funds if they are forced to issue recalls and have estimated the costs of any recalls to be about $1 billion.
Virginia Defective Product Attorney
To find out if your vehicle has been affected by the Takata recall, or any other recall, enter its Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) at https://www.nhtsa.gov/recalls
If you have been injured by a defective or dangerous product, contact a Virginia defective product attorney to discuss what legal recourse you may have. You may be entitled to financial compensation for any losses you have suffered, such as medical expenses and lost wages, as well as compensation for the pain your injuries have caused.