Orlando car accident attorneys note that the Takata airbag recall has become the “largest and most complex safety recall in U.S. history” according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
An estimated 42 million cars have been recalled so far in a 10-year-old saga of defective manufacturing, auto accidents, injuries and deaths, lawsuits and criminal convictions. Takata is a Japanese-based auto parts manufacturer with factories around the world that supply airbags to every major car maker.
In 1988, Honda was the first to recall cars because of a potentially dangerous defect in the design of the airbags. Takata designed the airbags to deploy in auto accidents by using a chemical that causes a small explosion. This initial combustion instantly inflates the airbag and protects drivers and passengers in auto accidents. The problem is that the chemical, ammonium nitrate, can break down in hot, humid conditions. When this happens, the metal canister holding the chemicals explodes. The blast shoots shrapnel, tiny pieces of molten metal, throughout the interior of the car. (The unstable chemical can also cause airbags to deploy without warning, even in the absence of auto accidents.)
A defective Takata airbag killed a Florida woman in an auto accident she should have survived. Police say that that the airbag on her 2002 Honda Accord shot pieces of metal into her head when it exploded. The shrapnel made a 6-by-3-inch gaping wound in her left temple and fractured her skull. She was the 21st person to die from an exploding Takata airbag. The defective airbags have injured more than 180 people in auto accidents.
Airbags and Florida Auto Accidents
Because of the state’s high temperature and humidity, experts are urging Florida car owners to check whether their vehicles are affected by the recall. The pace of the recalls and repairs is frustrating lawmakers and safety advocates. But authorities have prioritized Florida’s recall campaign. Car owners should check their car’s 17-digit vehicle identification number against the NHTSA list of recalled vehicles. Affected vehicles need to have recall repairs made by their dealer as soon as possible.
People who suffer losses because of defective products, carelessness or negligence might be eligible for compensation. Contact the Orlando car accident attorneys at Martinez Manglardi if an accident has turned your life upside down. Our personal injury lawyers will fight for you. Call 407-846-2240 for a free consultation. Offices throughout Central Florida.