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Takata Airbag Recall is Largest in U.S. History

airbagThe National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that 51 million cars were recalled in 2015, and over 25 percent of those recalled cars were never repaired. Defective car parts, such as airbags, can lead to serious and long-term injuries. If you or someone close to you has been injured by a faulty airbag, you may be able to recover compensation for your harm. At the Law Offices of Robert Dixon, our Miami attorneys can scrutinize the facts of your case and determine the viability of your claim.

Airbag maker Takata Corp. filed for bankruptcy in Delaware and Japan recently after paying over $1 billion in fines as part of a settlement with the United States Justice Department over its handling of airbag ruptures linked to 16 deaths and more than 180 injuries worldwide. Regulators have said that the recall would ultimately affect about 42 million U.S. vehicles with almost 70 million Takata airbag inflators, making it the largest recall in U.S. history. Furthermore, the NHTSA is investigating Honda for failing to promptly report incidents involving the Takata airbags installed in its vehicles.

Defective Takata airbags are prone to exploding when they are deployed, flinging burning shrapnel into drivers and passengers. Specifically, the problem is with the airbag inflators, which fill up airbags in the event of a crash. These can explode with too much force and spew metal shrapnel, which is what has been happening.

Automakers are ultimately responsible for the safety of their vehicles. As a result, a plaintiff who is injured by a defective airbag may be able to sue the manufacturer or retailer accountable for the injuries through a product liability claim. These claims intend to hold negligent parties accountable for placing a faulty product into the stream of commerce and ultimately into the hands of consumers.

Product liability claims may be rooted in one of the following:  manufacturing defects, design defects, or failures to warn. A manufacturing defect refers to an error that is made in the assembly of a product, leading to an item that does not match others made in the same line. A design defect is a flaw in the original scheme or design of the product that causes it to be unreasonably dangerous and create a risk for users. A failure to warn claim may arise when a manufacturer fails to provide consumers with sufficient information about the risks associated with using the product. In the context of faulty airbags, a manufacturing or design defect would likely be the most appropriate claim, depending on the specific facts of the case.

Car accidents, especially at high speeds, often involve shattered glass and debris that can cause injuries. Even a properly working airbag can cause injuries such as bruises and black eyes, but with a faulty airbag, these injuries can be significantly worse. Fortunately, Florida law allows victims of defective product accidents to recover damages, such as medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, lost income and benefits, pain and suffering, and disability.

Product liability cases can be very complicated. At the Law Offices of Robert Dixon, our skilled Miami product liability attorneys understand the nuances of this area of law and can put our knowledge to use in your case. If you or someone close to you has suffered an injury as a result of a defective airbag, do not delay in calling us at 1-877-499-HURT (4878) or contacting us online today.

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