Reports surfaced earlier in 2014 of airbags inflating in accidents in such a way that pieces of metal were allegedly flung at drivers and front-row passengers. Now, four deaths have been linked to allegedly faulty airbags manufactured by a Japanese safety parts company, Takata.
Nationwide Recall Announced
Initial investigations by the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration led the federal agency to first issue regional recalls for Florida and Puerto Rico. NHTSA initially warned that the airbags were more likely to malfunction in high humidity regions. However, on October 20, 2014, a nationwide recall of over 4.7 million vehicles was issued by NHTSA. Most of the vehicles were built in models years 2001 to 2007. The agency has urged owners across the country to take vehicles with the allegedly faulty Takata airbags to dealers for replacement. So many vehicles are involved that there is uncertainty as to whether the demand for replacement airbags can be met.
See if Your Vehicle is Involved
Although vehicles built by Toyota, General Motors, Honda, BMW, Mazda, and Nissan are among those recalled, it is believed that over 10 global automakers have used the Takata airbags in question. Any concerned owner can enter a vehicle identification number at safercar.gov to check on whether his or her vehicle is included in the recall.
Lawsuit Seeks $1 Million in Damages
In May of 2014, a defective airbag lawsuit was filed in the state of Texas. It alleged “shards of metal” ended up embedded in the eye and the face of a 28-year-old female driver whose airbag inflated during an accident in Florida’s Santa Rosa County. The plaintiff is seeking compensation in the amount of $1 million in the litigation.
Letters have gone out to owners of the vehicles affected, although the fact that many of the vehicles involved were built over a decade ago may be an issue. Some of the cars, trucks and SUVs may have been bought and sold multiple times, so current ownership may not always be easy to establish.
Lawsuits May Be Considered
When negligent conduct in the manufacturing of a product can be reasonably asserted, litigation that seeks compensation on behalf of injured victims may be considered. In this case, an Oklahoma defective airbag lawsuit might seek monetary damages to compensate for pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost wages, long-term rehabilitation costs and other losses. If a person is allegedly killed by the faulty deployment of an airbag, survivors may consider seeking compensation for loss of companionship, pain and suffering, burial expenses and other losses.
If you or someone you know has been in an accident involving possible faulty airbag deployment, we at Attorney Group for Oklahoma stand ready to assist in answering your questions. It is also possible for us to have you speak with one of our affiliated attorneys about the details of your case. A consultation with one of our affiliated attorneys is always complimentary and completely confidential. Call today.