Airbags failing in serious car accidents

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Posted on Oct 27, 2014

On October 20th, The Toyota Motor Corp recalled 247,000 vehicles here in the U.S. The recalls comes after many people have experienced airbags that, "explode with too much force and spraying vehicle occupants with metal shrapnel..."  

Currently the NHTSA is seeking more information on this issue, but has announced that anyone who own the vehicle that is on the recall list to go in and get their airbags changed as soon as possible. In Florida, where most of the incidents are occurring, Senator Bill Nelson has stated that even people whose cars are not registered in the state of Florida, but spend a substantial amount of time in Florida, are covered. He has encouraged automakers to offer loaner cars and/or car rental reimbursements. 

So far there has been four deaths linked to this defect, with several other lawsuits. According to NHTSA, there have been roughly 16 million cars that have been recalled globally for the defective airbags since 2008.

One of the lawsuits against the company comes from Stephanie Erdman in Texas. She reported that when the airbag deployed, "shards of metal, like shrapnel, were propelled toward [her]...striking [her] in the face and right eye".

This is horrific. We cannot imagine what these people could be going through after such a traumatic experience of shrapnel flying at their faces. Not only does these people have to deal with an accident, they have to deal with getting hurt from something that is supposed to keep them safe from serious injuries in a car accident. What makes this worse if that there is still no clear consensus on what could be the cause of the airbags exploding metal. Or there is information and the manufacturers are not saying anything, probably trying to place the blame somewhere or figure out a scapegoat.

If you own any of the cars that are being recalled, it is important that you make sure you take it in and get the airbag changed. If you know anyone that may own a car that has been recalled by Honda, let them know that it is important they get their car checked to avoid any future incidents.

For more information on the recalled cars, click here.

Frank R. Kearney, Attorney-at-Law
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Experienced DC Workers' Comp, Long Term Disability & Accident Lawyer