Already Largest in US History
See Attorney Rich Newsome Explain Recall Here
Orlando, FL – Last week officials with the US government announced a deal with Takata where they agreed to recall an additional 40 million airbags, bringing the total to 70 million. But in Washington, DC there’s a rumor that has been circulating for the last several weeks that the Takata airbag recall isn’t over and that the number of recalled airbags may grow even larger. Florida is widely considered “ground zero” for the recall.
U.S. Senator Bill Nelson has been at the front of this recall issue since the beginning, calling Senate hearings that resulted in the initial expansion of the recall. I had a chance to speak to him on Friday and here’s what he said:
Well it just doubled. It’s gone from about 35 million up to about 70 million and that’s just in the US. It’s estimated that if you went worldwide, it could be like 250 million. So this is of gargantuan proportions.
When asked if the recall could go any bigger, the Senator said,
If you go worldwide with the recall, then the answer is yes.
— U.S. Senator Bill Nelson
And here’s the real kicker: that’s just part of the problem.
At the core of the defect is a chemical called ammonium nitrate that Takata used as the explosive to fire and inflate the airbag. This is the same chemical Timothy McVeigh used to blow up the Oklahoma City Courthouse. This chemical becomes unstable over time when exposed to heat and humidity making it prone to explode with too much force, exploding the inflators and sending shrapnel into drivers and passengers.
Under the recall, they’ve been replacing these airbag inflators with new ones. The problem?
The replacement inflators also use ammonium nitrate. And if the
ammonium nitrate in the replacement inflators ALSO becomes unstable? Those will have to be replaced too.
Which means the number of recalled airbags may go up even more, on top of the 250 million worldwide as predicted by Senator Nelson.
To say that this situation has become a crisis for consumers and the auto industry is an understatement.
Meanwhile the best we can do as consumers and vehicle owners is to stay informed. Unfortunately as I said on my blog last week we still don’t know which makes and models are affected by the recall, but we will follow this closely and hope to keep everyone informed. So subscribe, sign up for our alerts on NewsomeLaw.com, and we’ll keep you posted.