Former Takata Consultant Says Millions of Cars Still Have Faulty Airbags
Jerry Cox, a former consultant with Takata back in 2014, says at least 12 million cars on the road still have defective Takata airbag inflators in them. According to a news report, Cox says vehicle owners are not getting the recall notices and probably don’t realize how serious or how deadly this Takata airbag defect can be. Cox said he warned Takata’s leadership team that its airbags were dangerous, but said his advice fell on deaf ears. He said no one in executive leadership would even listen to his concerns. Cox also said that was the reason why he decided to leave Takata.
Takata Knew About Defects
In 2004, a Honda driver was seriously injured when a Takata airbag inflator ruptured. These inflators were sending shards of metal flying into the vehicle compartment, causing major injuries. Since then, dozens of lawsuits have been filed against the company. In November 2014, Takata issued a statement denying accusations by two former employees who claimed the company had tested airbags in 2004 and found them to have these dangerous defects.
However, that changed in 2017 when Takata pleaded guilty to criminal wrongdoing over its airbag inflators. Prosecutors said Takata gave automakers false test results to get them to buy these inflators. Takata was acquired by auto components maker Key Safety Systems. The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has confirmed that defective Takata airbag inflators were responsible for 16 deaths in the United States and at least 250 people have reportedly been injured by these airbags.
What Steps Can You Take?
Consumers are urged to see if their car is on the recall list by visiting NHTSA’s website and entering their vehicle identification numbers or VIN. If your vehicle is on the list, call a local dealer who will replace the airbag at no cost. As an extra measure, you can also sign up for recall alerts for future recalls affecting your car. Or you can choose to use NHTSA’s new vehicle recall app.
If you or a loved one has been injured as the result of vehicle defects, contact an experienced auto defect lawyer who has successfully handled these types of cases. You may be able to receive compensation for damages such as medical expenses, lost income, hospitalization, cost of rehabilitation, pain and suffering and emotional distress. If you have lost a loved one to a defective auto or auto part, you may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the automaker and other potential parties as well.