Honda Civic crash death involved Takata airbag
The US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration revealed the Takata documents that showed that the air-bag inflator had burst in a 2007 Honda Civic in 2015 in India, wherein the driver had died. However, it could not be ascertained if the driver had died because of the inflator. If the inflator was the cause of death, this would be the 11th such death worldwide.
Takata Corporation is a Japanese company that manufactures automotive parts. In 1988 Takata began producing airbags, and by 2014 it had gained control of 20% of the market.
In 2008, Honda Motor recalled 4,000 Accords and Civics (2001 models) globally due to faulty airbags which could prove fatal. In May 2009, Ashley Parhem and in December 2009, Gurjit Rathore were killed when their Honda Accord 2001 airbags exploded. The matter brought Takata directly under the scanner. In 2010, Honda expanded the previous recalls.
3.4 million vehicles were recalled on 11 April 2013, by Honda, Toyota Motor, Nissan Motor and Mazda Motor due to the number of reported cases in faulty airbags. Takata showed a record $ 212.5 million annual net loss in May 2013. On 3 September 2013, Devin Xu died from "apparent facial trauma due to foreign object inside air bag" in L.A.
NHTSA slaps a fine of $14,000 daily on Takata for refusing to fully cooperate in the airbag probe.
In June 2014, Toyota expanded its prior recall to 2.27 million vehicles globally; U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opened an investigation, examining the cause of airbag explosions. By 23 June 2014, the recall count went to a total of 10.5 million vehicles over five years. By 21 October 2014, Takata records a 23% drop in shares in Tokyo.
Another death, that of Carlos Solis on 29 January 2015, got pegged on the Takata airbag defect. On 13 May 2015, Toyota recalled 5 million cars; Nissan recalled 1.56 million cars, taking the total to 31 million in eight years. This came as a further setback to Takata, the company on May 8 had declared that they expected to return to profit in 2015-16.
Honda Motor's decision to recall 5 million cars to change the malefic airbags made by Japan's Takata Corp caused alarm that sales may get affected. Honda followed its rivals Toyota Motor Corp and Nissan Motor's recall of some 6.5 million cars. The probe had highlighted that some Takata airbag inflators could explode with excessive force as they were sealed inefficiently.
Honda Motor Co. established that a Takata airbag inflator had ruptured in a July crash of a Honda Accord which caused the death of the young teenage driver. It's the 9th death in the world linked to the faulty Takata inflators. The death is the first since April since the recall of tens of million of vehicles worldwide due to faulty airbags.