Defective Air Bags Recall

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued an urgent recall of millions of vehicles manufactured by Honda, Toyota, GM, Nissan, Mazda, and BMW for problems with exploding airbags in automobiles.  This recall comes after years of issues with airbags manufactured by a company known as Takata.  The NHTSA encourages consumers who own the recalled vehicles to have the airbags repaired immediately to avoid serious injury or even death from these defective airbags.

The recalled airbags are potentially extremely dangerous, as an explosive chemical inside of the airbags has been causing some airbags to explode rather than properly deploy, even in minor automobile accidents.  Upon explosion, metal shrapnel from the component inside the airbag can fly into drivers and passengers, seriously injuring or even killing them.

Honda has one of the largest numbers of recalled vehicles, to date, although the number of recalled vehicles worldwide amongst all car manufacturers exceeds 14 million!  Investigations have shown that Honda and Takata have known about the airbag defects for years; in 2004, a Honda Accord had an exploding airbag that injured its driver.  Since then, at least three people have died from ruptured airbags in Honda Civics and Honda Accords.

In fact, in 2010, a Georgia woman was severely injured by a piece of flying shrapnel from an airbag in a Honda Civic that severed an artery in her neck.  In that case, the woman was stopped at a red light when the driver and passenger airbags deployed, and there was not even a wreck.  Honda quietly settled this lawsuit and several other lawsuits for confidential amounts.

It appears that despite numerous red flags about the dangerous nature of the airbags, Honda did not issue a recall until 2008, and when it did issue the recall, it was only for a very small fraction of its fleet of vehicles.  In reality, millions of vehicles contain potentially dangerous airbags.

When asked about what caused the airbags to explode, Takata’s engineers have given numerous reasons, including a machine defect at a production plant and water damage to the explosive component that caused the chemicals contained in the airbag to be overactive.  But, Takata has yet to fully explain why the airbags explode.

Further, it is now coming to light that the defective Takata airbags have been installed in millions of vehicles manufactured by several different car manufacturers, expanding the danger to millions of consumers worldwide.

Car manufacturers have been held liable for placing unsafe vehicles on the road, as shown by the numerous rollover, roof collapse, seat belt, acceleration, ignition, and other defective products litigation.   Products liability law in Georgia also allows consumers who are injured by the defective airbags to sue manufacturers for placing those products into the stream of commerce.

If you or a loved one has been injured by an exploding airbag, contact a products liability lawyer immediately to evaluate your case.  We at The Davis Injury Firm will walk you through the process and ensure that you obtain quality legal representation for your product's liability case.  Please call us at (404) 647-0722 to speak to an attorney today.

If you own any of the recalled vehicles listed by the NHTSA, you should bring your car in for service and repair immediately to avoid a very dangerous product.  See below for the NHTSA list of recalled vehicles; even if you do not see your car, you should also check with the manufacturer of your car directly to ensure that there are no recalls and continue to monitor the recalls in the future. The NHTSA allows you to sign up for recall alerts.  Here is the list:

Affected Vehicles, by Manufacturer, Impacted by CY 2013 and 2014 Recalls Involving Takata Airbags

Toyota: 778,177 total number of potentially affected vehicles

2002 – 2004 Lexus SC

2003 – 2004 Toyota Corolla

2003 – 2004 Toyota Corolla Matrix

2002 – 2004 Toyota Sequoia

2003 – 2004 Toyota Tundra

2003 – 2004 Pontiac Vibe

Honda: 2,803,214 total number of potentially affected vehicles

2001 – 2007 Honda Accord (4 cyl)

2001 – 2002 Honda Accord (6 cyl)

2001 – 2005 Honda Civic

2002 – 2006 Honda CR-V

2003 – 2011 Honda Element

2002 – 2004 Honda Odyssey

2003 – 2007 Honda Pilot

2006 – Honda Ridgeline

2003 – 2006 Acura MDX

2002 – 2003 Acura TL/CL

Nissan: 437,712 total number of potentially affected vehicles

2001 – 2003 Nissan Maxima

2001 – 2003 Nissan Pathfinder

2002 – 2003 Nissan Sentra

2001 – 2003 Infiniti I30/I35

2002 – 2003 Infiniti QX4

2003 – Infiniti FX

Mazda: 18,050 total number of potentially affected vehicles

2003 – 2004 Mazda6

2004 – Mazda RX-8

BMW: 573,935 total number of potentially affected vehicles

2000 – 2005 3 Series Sedan

2000 – 2006 3 Series Coupe

2000 – 2005 3 Series Sports Wagon

2000 – 2006 3 Series Convertible

2001 – 2006 M3 Coupe

2001 – 2006 M3 Convertible

General Motors: 133,221 total number potentially affected vehicles

2002 – 2003 Buick LeSabre

2002 – 2003 Buick Rendezvous

2002 – 2003 Cadillac DeVille

2002 – 2003 Chevrolet Trailblazer

2002 – 2003 Chevrolet Impala

2002 – 2003 Chevrolet Monte Carlo

2002 – 2003 Chevrolet Venture

2002 – 2003 GMC Envoy

2002 – 2003 GMC Envoy XL

2002 – 2003 Oldsmobile Aurora

2002 – 2003 Oldsmobile Bravada

2002 – 2003 Oldsmobile Silhouette

2002 – 2003 Pontiac Bonneville

2002 – 2003 Pontiac Montana