GM Airbag Recall Due to Defective Takata Inflators
GM announced a recall of 7 million pickups and SUVs with airbags made by Takata, the same manufacturer whose airbags are linked to several road deaths in the United States. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) ordered the recall despite GM’s argument that the Takata airbags are safe for use. The GM airbag recall comes six years after an initial Takata investigation that turned into the biggest auto recall in history.
Takata airbags have been prone to failure and have exploded, sending shrapnel throughout vehicles when deployed. Motorists have been severely injured and killed by the alleged defect. To date, around 63 million Takata airbags have been replaced in the U.S. alone.
GM previously recalled almost 800,000 vehicles equipped with Takata airbags with a different kind of Takata inflator. GM insists the current airbags do not pose a threat, but the NHTSA had the final say, ordering the recall of 5.9 million vehicles registered in the United States.
Joe Lyon is an experienced product liability attorney, reviewing auto defect cases and investigating injuries related to the GM airbag recall.
NHTSA Orders GM Airbag Recall
The latest GM airbag recall will cost the automaker about $1.2 billion. GM will have to foot all costs with Takata now bankrupt. The safety agency released a statement, concluding “the GM inflators in question are at risk of the same type of explosion after long-term exposure to high heat and humidity as other recalled Takata inflators.”
The Takata airbags have an ammonium-nitrate-based propellant that has been known to deteriorate over time or when exposed to high temperatures and humidity. If a damaged airbag is deployed, they can shoot metal into the vehicle, posing serious injury risks and deaths.
GM has thirty days to provide the NHTSA with a plan on how the automaker will notify owners and fix recalled airbags. Airbag replacements are done at no cost to vehicle owners. The recall covers the following vehicles with model years 2007 to 2014:
- Cadillac Escalade
- Chevrolet Avalanche
- GMC Sierra