The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) just issued their end-of-year update on the Takata Airbag Recall. The NHTSA reports that the average recall repair rates across all manufacturers increased by 30 percent in calendar year 2018. Additionally, the number of unrepaired vehicles in Priority Groups 1-3 (the oldest vehicles in the highest-risk areas) has been cut in half in one year.

Communicating Urgency For High Priority Recalls: Takata Airbags

According to the NHTSA, communicating the urgency of these recalls has helped in getting the word out about the importance of these necessary repairs. Approximately 37 million vehicles equipped with 50 million defective Takata air bags are currently under recall, due to a potential of exploding when deployed. This can cause serious injuries or death to drivers and passenger occupants.

At this time, vehicle manufacturers are prioritizing repairs for older cars in high-risk areas. These are the most dangerous air bags. There are 19 different vehicle manufacturers involved in this widespread recall.

Additional Findings in the Yearend Report

Repair rates for recalled do-not-drive 2006 Ford Rangers increased from 6 percent in January 2018 to 82 percent in October 2018. Recalled high-risk model year 2001-2003 Honda vehicles’ repair rate reached 96 percent.

Many state DMVs supported outreach efforts through participation in letter-mailing campaigns, helped to double and in some cases triple, repair rates for high-risk vehicles in Florida, Louisiana, New York and Virginia.

Door-to-door “Find-and-Fix” canvassing in 2018 confirmed concerns with the accuracy of owner data. One manufacturer received an updated DMV data set and found that 30 percent of owner information changed in a year’s time. Two other manufacturers found that when new addresses were identified, 73 percent of the time it was because the vehicle had a new owner.

Defective Air Bag Recall Moving Forward

Unfortunately, the yearend report also found that in general, older vehicles have much lower recall repair rates than newer vehicles. This is very concerning because the older cars, especially in high-risk areas (hot and humid climates), are the most dangerous.

If you have been injured or if you have lost a loved one due to an exploding Takata air bag or any other type of defective car part, contact the skilled and proven team at Harris Personal Injury Lawyers, Inc. at 1.800.GO.HARRIS for a free case consultation today.

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