The Takata airbag recall been going on for a couple of years now. It began to take off when the New York Times reported the company was aware of a dangerous defect with its airbags. 11 days later, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration called for the recall to be expanded nationally from states with high humidity such as Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and along the Gulf Coast states.
So far 11 people have been killed by shrapnel from the affected airbags and about 180 drivers and passengers injured. 9 of the 11 fatalities have occurred in cars made by Acura and Honda.
The number of cars impacted by the recall has grown exponentially affecting cars from 19 different carmakers for models made between 2002 and 2016. Manufacturers include BMW, Chrysler, Ferrari, Ford, GM, Honda, Jaguar / Land Rover, Mazda, Mercedes Benz, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Subaru, Toyota, and Volkswagen.
Tens of millions of vehicles are affected and millions more will be added to the recall in the coming years. Vehicles recalled may have listed for either the driver or passenger side airbag or both.
The NHTSA has called for the replacement efforts of the affected airbags to happen more quickly with priority of replacement airbags going to areas most affected. These areas are where the injuries and deaths have been most prevalent due to high humidity and heat.
To date, over 12.4 million airbags have been replaced or repaired consisting of over 6.7 million driver side airbags and over 5.7 million passenger side airbags. At the current rate of replacement, the NHTSA doesn’t expect the recall to be completed until 2020, a year longer than they originally anticipated.
You can find out whether your car is included on the current list by going to www.safercar.gov and searching by your VIN number. Even if your car is not currently on the list, Federal Regulators suggest checking this at least twice a year as more vehicles are expected to be added in the coming years.
If your car is listed in the recall, it’s important to check in with your dealer and schedule a time for your vehicle to be repaired. If parts aren’t available now, determine when you’ll be able to schedule the repair for a later date. Since Texas is one of the priority states, parts should be more readily available here than in lower priority states.
The Takata recall is a great reminder to us all to register our cars with the manufacturer and take product recalls seriously. After all, the life you save could well be your own. What do you think? Share your thoughts, questions, and experiences with me on my Facebook, Google +, and LinkedIn pages. I’d love to hear from you!