Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is recalling almost 1 million vehicles because pieces of the driver’s side airbag cover could act as dangerous projectiles during a car accident. According to Consumer Reports, the automaker says parts of the plastic airbag cover could potentially detach and strike occupants if the airbags deploy. So far, FCA is aware of at least 14 injuries to drivers that may be related to this issue. The nature or extent of those injuries is not known. The affected vehicles don’t have airbags supplied by Takata. Also, the recall involves the airbag cover, not the airbag itself.
Details of the Recall
FCA says this problem is occurring because clips that are part of the airbag may loosen over time. If the airbag deploys, these clips, and the plastic emblem attached to the cover, may become projectiles that could then injure the driver. When the recall begins, dealers will replace the airbag cover at no charge to consumers. Until this free repair is completed, FCA says that owners of the affected vehicles should not tamper with the plastic emblems attached to the airbag cover on the steering wheel.
FCA has said it will begin notifying owners of the affected vehicles starting in August. If you own one of these vehicles, you may be able to check if it is included in the recall, by visiting the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) website and entering your vehicle identification number (VIN). For more information, call FCA’s customer service line at 1-800-853-1403.
Auto Product Liability Issues
Takata airbags have led to an unprecedented number of vehicles being recalled. Because of that recall, we know that when airbags shoot out projectiles, it could prove fatal. In the case of the Takata recall, the airbag inflators exploded with such force that they sent shards of metal flying in the vehicle compartment. This recall is similar although it involves a different part of the airbag. But, the injuries caused could be similar.
If you or a loved one has been injured by these or other defective auto products or parts, you may be able to seek compensation for the injuries, damages and losses you have sustained. Injured victims can seek compensation for damages such as medical expenses, lost income, hospitalization, rehabilitation, permanent injuries, disabilities, pain and suffering and emotional distress. An experienced auto defect lawyer will be able to better explain your legal rights and options.