Thus far, at least 13 deaths and more than 100 injuries have been definitively linked to Takata-made airbags with defective inflators that can cause the airbags to rupture in even minor collisions. But new test data shows that a particular subset of the inflators – subject to the largest automotive safety recall in history – pose a significantly higher risk of airbag rupturing during deployment than others.
Tests showed that airbag inflators in certain model-year 2001-2003 Honda and Acura vehicles contain an additional manufacturing defect that can cause rupture rates of up to 50 percent in laboratory settings. Plus, when driven over long periods of time in areas of high humidity, like here in Florida, the potential for rupture increases.
Models that carry the increased risk are:
- 2001-2002 Honda Civic
- 2001-2002 Honda Accord
- 2002-2003 Acura TL
- 2002 Honda CR-V
- 2002 Honda Odyssey
- 2003 Acura CL
- 2003 Honda Pilot
Honda officials report that, as of this writing, more than 70 percent of vehicles that are part of this higher-risk subset have been repaired. But upward of 313,000 remain on the roadways without repair.
“The air bag inflators in this particular group of vehicles pose a grave danger to drivers and passengers that must be fixed right away,” Dr. Mark Rosekind, Administrator of the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. “Drivers should visit SaferCar.gov or contact their local dealer to check whether their vehicle is affected. If it is, they should have the vehicle repaired immediately for free at an authorized dealer.”
Nearly 70 million Takata air bag inflators are or will be under recall by 2019, in the largest and most complex auto safety recall in US history. A combination of time, environmental moisture and fluctuating high temperatures contributes to the degradation of the ammonium nitrate propellant in the inflators, causing the propellant to burn too quickly, rupturing the inflator module and sending shrapnel flying through vehicle.
If you believe that your vehicle may contain a recalled airbag and there have yet been no issues, heed the recall and take your car in for repair immediately. If you have suffered an airbag-related injury or loss, keep the vehicle and airbag intact and call 800-251-1111 to speak with a Takata airbag recall attorney with Jacksonville’s Harrell and Harrell.