Takata, the company behind the massive ongoing safety recall of automotive airbags, is reaching out to the Houston area, including the Texas Medical Center, to make sure everyone checks their vehicle for defective airbags.
Tens of millions of defective airbag inflators are under recall. Even a fender bender can cause these airbag inflators to rupture, spraying metal shrapnel into drivers and passengers. At least 10 people in the U.S. have been killed by defective airbag inflators, including two deaths in Greater Houston. More than 100 Americans have suffered injuries, such as vision loss or broken bones, due to defective airbag inflators.
For Houstonians, the situation is particularly urgent. Prolonged exposure to high heat and humidity degrades the chemical propellant in a defective airbag inflator over time, which makes it more explosive and increases risk of serious injury or death. There are an estimated 250,000 airbags in Houston that are subject to the recall. The airbag recall has expanded since it was first announced, and so drivers may have checked their airbags when the recall was first announced, but their airbags may now be subject to recall.
Click here to learn how to check your airbags: for the risks associated with driving a vehicle with a defective airbag inflator, how to determine whether an airbag inflator is defective and how to get it replaced for free.