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Toyota Venza SUVs Recalled for Side Airbags That Might Not Deploy

toyota recall

Toyota is recalling nearly 280,000 Venza SUVs from 2009 to 2015 because of concerns that damaged wires on the driver’s side door might prevent side and curtain airbags from deploying during a collision. The fault can put drivers in serious danger.

According to Consumer Reports, there is a risk that the interior wires within the door can in some cases rub against a grommet, causing improper wear. In turn, this wear can compromise the airbag sensor in the door, rendering it inoperable and increasing the potential for serious injuries.

Details of the Recall

There may be a related warning light in the instrument panel of Venza SUVs. Toyota estimates that less than 1% of the vehicle population may experience this problem. So far, the company has received more than 50 warranty claims related to this issue and has said it will reimburse vehicle owners who paid for related work. The recall is expected to begin May 31.

When the recall begins, dealerships will inspect and replace the driver’s side front door and wire harness free of charge. Owners may contact Toyota customer service at 800-331-4331. To check if your vehicle has an open recall, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) website and enter your 17-digit vehicle identification number or VIN.

Why Side Airbags Are Important

Airbags in general provide crucial cushioning for vehicle occupants during a crash. They are normally hidden but will deploy and inflate in the event of a crash. Front airbags have been required in all new passenger vehicles since the 1999 model year. Side airbags are not specifically mandated, but nearly all manufacturers now include them as standard equipment in order to meet federal side protection requirements. According to the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS), side airbags are important because they protect occupants from head injuries and reduce the driver’s risk of death in driver-side crashes by 37% and an SUV driver’s risk by 52%. This means that the potential fault in Venza SUVs could put drivers at risk.

Federal regulations on side-impact protection require a certain level of head and torso protection for all occupants. While it doesn’t specifically mandate side airbags, the required protection is typically achieved with them. As of the 2014 model year, virtually all, new passenger vehicles must comply with this regulation. As a result, the vast majority of passenger vehicles come with side airbags as standard equipment.

Auto Product Liability Issues

If you or a loved one has been injured as the result of a defective airbag or any other auto defect, you may be able to seek compensation for your injuries, damages, and losses. An experienced auto defect lawyer will be able to advise you regarding your legal rights and help you secure maximum compensation for your losses.



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