On October 20, 2014, the U.S. National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) recalled millions of vehicles with allegedly faulty airbags manufactured by Takata, a Japanese safety parts company. NHTSA has stated that owners of the approximately 4.7 million vehicles involved should take them to dealers “immediately.”
There is concern over how a sufficient supply of replacement airbags can be maintained. There is also a possibility that the scope of the recall will broaden, as some believe there may be as many as 7 million vehicles in the United States equipped with the Takata airbags in question.
Website Lists Recalled Vehicles
Many of the recalled cars, trucks and SUVs were built for model years 2001 thru 2007, inclusive. More than 2.8 million Hondas, 700,000 Toyotas, 500,000 BMWs and 400,000 Nissans are included in the recall. General Motors and Mazda have a smaller number of vehicles on the list. Although many vehicles are from from years 2001-2007, certain 2011 Honda Elements also appear on the list. Those that want to determine whether a given vehicle has been recalled can enter the VIN number at safercar.gov.
The Takata airbags in question may have faulty inflators that may cause them to burst due to excessive force. When this happens, small metal fragments may be propelled right at drivers or front-row passengers. Thus far, four deaths have been allegedly linked to this problem, and lawsuits have been filed in certain cases.
One such lawsuit was filed in May 2014 in a civil court in Texas that followed a car accident on September 1, 2013 that occurred in Santa Rosa County, Florida. The suit was filed in Texas because the 2002 Honda was purchased in that state. In the suit, the 28-year-old female motorist claims that “shards of metal” were embedded in her right eye and in her face when a Takata airbag deployed in a faulty manner. She is reportedly seeking $1 million in damages.
Possible High Humidity Link
Federal investigations into Takata airbags began in the first half of 2014. In June 2014, regional recalls occurred in Florida and Puerto Rico, in part because it was initially believed the airbag inflator problem could be more pronounced in areas with higher humidity. Mississippi residents may want to make note of this added concern about vehicles in high humidity regions. A Mississippi defective airbag lawsuit can be filed when a faulty airbag deployment can be reasonably asserted.
Allegedly defective Takata airbags may have been installed in vehicles built by 10 or more automakers across the globe. It is estimated that over 12 million vehicles have been already recalled around the world.
Mississippi law does provide a means for injured parties to seek redress in the courts when defective products can be blamed. A Mississippi defective airbag lawsuit can seek compensatory damages for medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, long-term rehabilitation expenses and other losses. If a loved one is killed by an airbag, his or her family can consider the filing of a Mississippi defective airbag lawsuit seeking compensation for burial expenses and loss of companionship.
Injured by an Airbag? Call Us Today.
Please reach out to us at Attorney Group for Mississippi with any questions you may have about injuries suffered in a wreck. If desired, a free consultation can be arranged with one of our affiliated attorneys. You are under no obligation and your call is confidential.