Hiroshi Shimizu, senior vice president in charge of global quality assurance for
embroiled Japanese airbag manufacturer Takata, apologized in a US Senate hearing
Thursday for the deaths of six motorists tied to defective airbags. Airbags manufactured
by the Takata Corporation for at least ten auto manufactures utilized an unstable form
of compound ammonium nitrate, causing them to deploy with excessive force. Upon
deployment, metal shrapnel may be ejected into the passenger compartment, leading to
further injury or death.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is currently demanding the
expansion of voluntary recall efforts undertaken by Takata and the affected automakers,
which have covered 8 million vehicles within the United States. According to Bloomberg
News, only 6 percent of those vehicles currently eligible for airbag replacement have
been remedied. Car companies point to Takata production shortfalls as the root cause of
these low figures.
“We are currently producing more than 300,000 replacement kits per month and will be
increasing those production levels beginning in January,” Shimizu said. The number of
kits produced each month is expected to reach 450,000 in January.
The death of an Arizona woman mentioned yesterday in the Senate hearings is the sixth death related to Takata airbags. Her case was notable
as it fell outside the current recall area, which has led to a rise in panic among drivers
nationwide. Takata Corporation has responded by claiming that diverting replacement
parts for a national recall from the humid regions may put lives at risk.
If you or a loved one have been injured due to the negligence of the airbag manufacturers, you can fight
back. Contact an experienced attorney from Arentz Law by calling 1-800-305-6000,
or by filling out the contact form on this page, to schedule your free initial consultation.
Attorneys are ready to help you receive the compensation you deserve.