It's only August, but General Motors (GM) has already recalled approximately 29 million vehicles for a variety of issues, the latest of which involves faulty airbags. The automaker recently recalled 29,019 Chevrolet Cruze models from 2013 and 2014 due to an issue with malfunctioning airbags manufactured by Takata. Other auto manufacturers have also issued recalls for vehicles with Takata airbags.
Over the past year, automakers have recalled more than 10 million vehicles due to problems with airbags manufactured by Takata. According to a letter sent by GM to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the issue with the airbags stems from an incorrect part used in the airbag inflator, which can cause the airbag to rupture during deployment. When this occurs, vehicle occupants may be struck by airbag components that are released into the air. This can cause injury.
Thus far, eight incidents have been linked to defective Takata airbags: two in Japan and six in the U.S. 2 deaths have been reportedly linked to the defect, both in 2009 model year Hondas. Honda and Takata have settled wrongful death lawsuits with the families in these cases.
Last month, Nissan, Honda, Mazda and Toyota issued recalls related to faulty Takata airbags, and BMW issued a recall last spring for a similar issue. According to GM, however, this recent recall may be different than the issue affecting the other auto manufacturers' recalls. A GM spokesman stated, "Theirs is a chemistry issue, and ours is a mechanical issue."
Regardless of the particular cause of the malfunctioning airbags, they have the potential to cause serious injury and have already been linked to two deaths. Owners of vehicles affected by the recalls are urged to immediately follow manufacturer instructions regarding replacements or repairs.
If you have questions about a vehicle recall or defective auto part, a South Carolina product liability attorney at George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers may be able to help. Our law firm offers experienced legal counsel to injured consumers and the families of those who have lost their lives as a result of defective or dangerous products. This includes motor vehicles and their various parts, which can pose deadly threats if they are poorly designed or improperly manufactured.
Automakers and other manufacturers may be held strictly liable for injuries caused by defective products, meaning an injured consumer does not need to prove specific fault or negligence – only that the product was defective and caused injury. Injured consumers may be entitled to financial compensation for medical expenses, ongoing medical treatment, lost earnings, funeral costs, loss of companionship, emotional trauma, property damage and much more.
Find out how our attorneys can pursue justice and fair compensation on your behalf after an injury or auto accident caused by a defective vehicle or vehicle part – call today. We serve clients throughout South Carolina from office locations in North Charleston, Walterboro, Moncks Corner, Columbia, and more!