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What does the Takata airbag recall mean for Florida drivers?

Tampa-area residents may be aware of the massive airbag recall initiated by the Japanese company Takata. This recall and the public's awareness of the safety issues that could arise due to faulty airbags has been ongoing for awhile, but recently, the company expanded the recall even more. It is the largest automotive recall in United States history.

With the new expansion to the ongoing recall, vehicles made in 2009, 2010 and 2013 are now included. While the manufacturer will name specific models included in the recall, it does include cars made by Tesla, Honda, Toyota, Audi, BMW, Daimler Vans, Ford, General Motors, Fiat Chrysler, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Subaru, Jaguar-Land Rover, Mazda and Mercedes-Benz. This likely affects many Florida drivers.

Details of this massive automotive recall

The source of the problem with the faulty airbags lies in the chemicals used to inflate the airbags upon impact. Takata uses ammonium nitrate to cause an explosion, which would therefore cause the bag to inflate, but these chemicals can deteriorate over time. Consider the following facts about this recall:

  • The ammonium nitrate is especially likely to deteriorate in environments where there is high humidity and high temperatures.
  • This deterioration can cause the chemical to burn too fast, which could in turn cause its metal container to explode. As a result, the hot metal pieces could fly onto occupants of the vehicle.
  • Around the world, approximately 200 people have died as a result of these faulty airbags, and almost as many suffered serious injuries.

The facts about the recall are especially concerning for Florida drivers because our environment that is hot and humid for a large portion of the year. While the recall is phased to take place over the next three years, cars in humid and hot places, such as Florida, are supposed to get priority.

Holding automakers accountable for negligence

When you purchase a car, it is with the expectation that the components of the vehicle are not dangerous or pose a risk to your health. If you suffered physical harm due to negligence of a car manufacturer or the manufacturer of faulty car parts, remember that  you have rights. 

You may have the right to pursue a personal injury claim against the responsible parties, even if it is an automaker or other large company. If you believe that you may have a viable claim, you would be wise to start by seeking a complete evaluation of your case.

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