Last Friday - January 30, 2015 - Honda announced that an airbag manufactured by the Japanese auto parts company Takata Corporation ruptured in a fatal collision that killed a man in the Houston area in January. The death is the sixth fatality linked to defective airbags in Honda vehicles, in addition to at least 52 confirmed injuries.
According to a statement released by Honda, the Houston man purchased a used 2002 Honda Accord and was never notified of a recall involving the defective airbags. In recent months, automakers have issued recalls for millions of vehicles equipped with Takata airbags. In October of last year, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) also issued a consumer advisory urging owners of recalled vehicles to take immediate action and replace their airbags.
You can read more about recalls and how to make sure you're safe on a previous blog.
Both Takata and Honda have struggled to deal with blowback caused by defective airbags, which can explode during deployment and send shrapnel flying toward vehicle occupants. In early January, Honda was fined $70 million - the largest auto safety fine in American history - for failing to provide the NHTSA with reports of nearly 2,000 deaths, injuries, and warning signs involving defective airbags.
As federal safety regulators continue their investigations and oversight of the auto industry, victims and families who've suffered losses as a result of defective airbags have begun filing personal injury claims under product liability laws. Many of these lawsuits allege that victims suffered harm due to inherently dangerous airbags and that they are entitled to financial compensation for their damages.
At Fibich, Leebron, Copeland & Briggs, we've helped many victims injured in auto accidents and by defective products. If you have questions about your legal rights after a car accident, or about defective airbags, our legal team is available to discuss your case during a free consultation.
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