Takata Corp., the Japanese auto parts manufacturer responsible for making the dangerously defective airbags that have caused at least 11 fatalities, is now being ordered by federal regulators to expand its recall even further.
New estimates released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration after the announcement of the recall expansion in early May project that nearly 50 million vehicles will now be affected. The Takata recall has now become that largest in U.S. history.
The defect has been attributed to the use of ammonium nitrate, a chemical used in the deployment of the airbags that can cause the inflator to rupture, propelling metal shards into the vehicle, injuring and killing passengers.
The recent death of a 17-year-old, who was killed by shrapnel from a defective Takata airbag that deployed too forcefully in what was otherwise a minor collision, brings the total number of recall-related fatalities to 11.
Takata has struggled to meet the demands of the initial recall, which included an estimated 24 million vehicles over the last decade. At this time, only one third of the vehicles included in the first recall have been repaired as auto dealers around the country await the delivery of replacement parts that have been delayed for months.
Drivers who believe their vehicle may be affected by the recall can check by going to safercar.gov and entering their Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).
If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident involving defective auto parts that resulted in personal injury or death, you could be eligible to file a claim for compensation.
The experienced Takata recall attorneys at Simien & Simien can review your case free of cost. Our accident lawyers can help you explore your legal options and begin the claims process so that you can obtain the justice you deserve.