Takata Airbag Recall Could Impact Your Automobile Accident Claim
You may have likely never heard of this company, but they play a big role in your safety when you are on the road. Takata is one of the largest suppliers of airbag systems for automobile manufacturers worldwide. As of last year, 14 automakers have issued recalls due to faulty airbags supplied from Takata. There have been nearly a dozen deaths and many more injuries because of faulty Takata airbags. If you have been injured in an automobile accident, there is important information you should know regarding your airbags and the potential for fair compensation.
What Are The Problems With Takata Airbags?
Certain types of Takata airbags have faulty inflators. These inflators have a propellant in them that degrades over time, resulting in airbag ruptures. A car crash increases the likelihood of an airbag rupture. Additionally, ruptures are most likely to occur in high, sustained humidity – exactly the type of climate found in Florida.
When Takata first recalled their airbags in May 2015, 11 vehicle brands and 34 million airbags were affected. As time went on, the recalls continued to grow, and eventually grew to include all Takata driver and passenger airbags that contained the aforementioned propellant. It’s estimated that the recall affects nearly 70 million vehicles.
Takata Airbags Impacting Floridians
As mentioned, airbag rupture is most likely to occur in humid climates. Recently, another plaintiff has filed an airbag lawsuit in Florida. He was involved in an accident. However, his airbag failed to deploy properly, and instead exploded. Dangerous metal shrapnel was sent flying throughout the car as a result, causing serious injury. This is consistent with other lawsuits filed against Tankata. The shrapnel wounds are consistent with gun and knife wounds. Even a minor fender-bender at low speeds can cause the airbags to explode.
Takata has already begun to reach settlements over their defective airbags. One Florida woman settled with Takata after a 2014 crash that left her a quadriplegic after the airbag exploded with excessive force.
The Result Will Be Costly For Takata
Takata has already pleaded guilty to criminal misconduct, agreeing to pay $1 billion to the U.S. Department of Justice. $125 million of this will go toward victim compensation, although individual plaintiffs are still allowed to file personal injury lawsuits against the company. Takata is also required to pay $70 million to the National Highway Safety Administration for failing to address the issue in a more timely manner. Deadlines are now in place for the repair and replacement of faulty airbags.
The state of Hawaii has also sued Takata, demanding $10,000 for every affected car owner in Hawaii. The suit also demands that each company do more to raise awareness of the dangers the defect poses to car owners. Hawaii sees this as a way to prevent further accidents from occurring, as well as obtaining compensation for any losses associated with the incident, including alternative transportation costs and diminished value of the vehicle.
Hawaii’s suit is not seeking compensation for crash victims, but is instead seeking compensation for car owners impacted by the recall. It remains unclear is Florida has filed as similar suit to protect their drivers.
Contact An Experience Legal Team For More Guidance
If you were injured in an accident and you believe they may have been the result of faulty airbags, contact our experienced team today. Our team at Goldman Babboni Fernandez & Walsh will work with you to ensure you receive the compensation to which you are entitled after suffering such a traumatic experience.