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Japanese Supplier Takata Facing NHTSA Investigation

Posted On behalf of Simien & Simien on Jun 24, 2014 in Automotive


Japanese auto supplier Takata is investigating whether the defects in their airbags may be more pronounced in hot and humid regions. The company has had ongoing issues with airbags and in 2013, more than 3 million vehicles were recalled.

Reports of accidents in Puerto Rico and Florida involving vehicles with Takata airbags has led to an investigation to uncover whether overexposure to moisture and manufacturing defects may be at the heart of the humidity issue in Takata airbags.

Thus far, the Takata vehicles being investigated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) involve 1.1 million vehicles from the 2002-2006 model years. Worldwide, more than 3 million vehicles total are involved in the defective Takata airbag investigation.

Presently, the NHTSA investigation is evaluating and collecting data regarding all of the potential Takata clients who received shipments of defective airbag inflators. The airbag inflators are suspected to inflate and release shrapnel that harms the occupants of vehicles involved in car accidents.

In 2013, Toyota recalled more than 2 million cars and fixed the Takata airbags, but in June 2014, the company announced that an additional 650,000 vehicles would need to be recalled. The NHTSA cites poor recording keeping efforts by Takata that have failed to reveal all of the defective airbag shipments.

Vehicles with Takata airbags were recalled in April 2013 after reports that the propellant used in the airbags could cause fires and burn occupants of vehicles. It remains to be seen whether this round of recalls has solved the problem.