The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recently slapped Takata, one of the world’s largest vehicle air bag manufacturers, with a $70 million fine, according to a recent article in the New York Times. Meanwhile, automaker Honda has decided to sever its relationship with Takata, citing the manufacturer’s misrepresentations and manipulations of test data related to its airbags. U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx echoed Honda’s concerns about misrepresented data, stating in a press conference that “delay, misdirection and a refusal to acknowledge the truth allowed a serious problem to become a massive crisis” and that, when the DOT first approached Takata about the problem, “there was a lot of denial” from the manufacturer. Takata did not dispute these claims during its own press conference, according to the Times. A spokesperson for Honda, speaking about the decision to split with Takata, stated that Honda’s leadership believes that Takata “was not forthcoming” during initial safety investigations, preventing Honda from ordering more comprehensive testing.
To date, the defective airbags have been connected to eight deaths and over 100 injuries. The metal casing on the airbag’s inflater can rupture and explode, sending metal shards ricocheting around the inside of the vehicle while drivers and passengers are inside. Over 19 million vehicles containing the defective Takata air bag assemblies have been recalled in the United States; worldwide, several million more vehicles have also been recalled.
Want to know more about the Takata recall? Check out Expanded Takata Airbag Recall Goes National – New Information.
If someone you love suffered an injury due to a defective auto part or car accident, our Washington D.C. personal injury attorneys can help you seek compensation.