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Takata Settles Airbag Recall: Car Owners Waiting for Replacement Parts, Accusing Car Makers of Cover-Up

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In May of 2015, the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued a national recall on Takata brand airbags (NHTSA, 2018). The airbag inflators can explode, especially when exposed to high humidity and temperatures, sending hot metal into the driver and passengers (Krisher, 2018). The defective airbags have already caused 21 deaths and 180 injuries. While Takata is getting ready to settle current lawsuits, file Chapter 11 Bankruptcy, and sell its remaining assets, car manufacturers are dealing with the aftermath.

Ford issued a stop driving order to many owners of Ranger trucks sold in 2006 (Tavares, 2018). Ford originally issued a warning for almost 30,000 Rangers in January of this year and added about 3,000 more in February. They are directing their dealers to pick up the recalled Rangers and leave loaner cars for the owners at Ford's expense (Kiley, 2018).

While Ford is complying with the NHTSA's recalls, General Motors Co. is pushing back. GM is petitioning the NHTSA to remove some of their recalled vehicles from the list for the third time since 2016. They claim that these vehicles had custom-built inflators not made by Takata (Detroit Free Press, 2018). If GM is able to remove these vehicles from the recall list, they could save about $1 billion. Currently, GM has listed these vehicles under "preliminary recall" (General Motors, n.d.). Curtis White of Kentucky, an owner of one of the preliminary recalled 2007 Chevrolet Suburbans, has accused GM of corporate cover-up concerning the recall (Detroit Free Press, 2018). He received a recall notice, but his GM dealer says that there is nothing to be done to fix it.

To see the complete list of vehicles on the recall list, click here.

References:

Detroit Free Press. (2018, February 07). General Motors asks to avoid Takata airbag recalls for 3rd time. Retrieved February 15, 2018, from https://www.freep.com/story/money/cars/general-motors/2018/02/07/takata-airbag-recall-general-motors/316980002/

General Motors. (n.d.). The Takata Airbag Safety Recall. Retrieved February 15, 2018, from http://www.gmtakataairbag.com/product/public/us/en/takata_recall/home.html

Kiley, D. (2018, February 12). Takata Settles Airbag Recall, But Millions Of Car Owners Still Waiting For Replacements. Retrieved February 12, 2018, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/davidkiley5/2018/02/12/takata-settles-airbag-recall-but-millions-of-car-owners-still-waiting-for-replacements/#2678281d7f74

Krisher, T. (2018, January 18). 14 automakers list more models in Takata air bag recall. Retrieved February 12, 2018, from https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/cars/2018/01/18/14-automakers-list-more-models-takata-air-bag-recall/1044076001/

NHTSA. (2018, February 06). Takata Air Bags. Retrieved February 12, 2018, from https://www.nhtsa.gov/recall-spotlight/takata-air-bags

Tavares, J. (2018, February 12). Ford urges customers to stop driving Rangers with Takata airbags. Retrieved February 15, 2018, from http://www.nydailynews.com/autos/news/ford-urges-customers-stop-driving-rangers-takata-article-1.3815812

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