Vehicle airbag update questions

Vehicle airbag update questions

Vehicle airbag update questions

More than 100 million cars have been recalled in the United States since it emerged in 2007 that the Japanese auto parts maker's airbags were inflating with too much force spraying shrapnel on crash victims; 18 deaths have been linked to the scandal.

Australian vehicle companies are facing a class action over the defective airbags involved in a global recall.

The safety concerns surrounding Takata airbags stem from the airbag's metal inflator unit.

Nissan said it had been replacing faulty airbags, but in May a year ago it was revealed the replacements would also be captured under a recall that covered airbags without a chemical drying agent.

Fourteen brands have been impacted in Australia alone, with 2.3 million vehicles affected locally.

"With 2.3 million vehicles in Australia requiring their potentially lethal Takata airbags to be replaced, it's clear the auto companies are under pressure to fulfil their obligations under Australian Consumer Law".

The Honda CRV model was the subject of a worldwide recall for faulty driver and passenger airbags earlier this year.

AUSTRALIA'S first suspected death relating to the Takata airbag recall has prompted the consumer watchdog to urge owners to speed up their replacement - and for carmakers to do the right thing. An Australian motorist was killed after being hit in the neck by shrapnel from the airbag of his 2007 Honda CR-V.

While some airbag inflators are being replaced with newly designed parts equipped with desiccant created to absorb moisture, others have been replaced with flawed parts that will eventually pose a danger to occupants.

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Minister for Urban Infrastructure Paul Fletcher has written to all auto manufacturers demanding a status update on their recall program and their contact with affected owners. It is the biggest safety recall in automotive history.

But those cars may also need attention in the future. The group says it questioned 14 auto companies in Australia.

The airbag's fault involves the ammonium nitrate used to trigger the inflation.

NHTSA says there have been no ruptures in the real world or in testing, and that other Takata inflators with the drying agent have not been recalled.

Consumer group Choice said Australians were "driving ticking time bombs".

"We're seeking information from the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development as to exactly what information it is requiring auto manufacturers and retailers to give consumers about their car's airbag, including the likelihood of the airbag being replaced again".

The Australasian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) recently announced it will be undertaking its own investigation into the local handling of the call backs.

"While estimates of how long the dodgy Takata airbags take to break down vary, it's deeply concerning to think these bombs-in-a-bag lie in wait in many popular cars poised to explode their deadly shrapnel into unsuspecting victims".

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