Majority of Cars Equipped With Takata Airbags Yet to Be Fixed, Senator Says
Only 35 percent of the 46.2 million affected cars have been repaired.
According to a recent report from Reuters, 65 percent of cars equipped with faulty Takata airbag inflators remain unfixed. A U.S. Senator pointed out this deficit at a recent meeting, urging automakers to speed up the repair process—as there have already been 11 deaths and over 180 injuries caused by the defective equipment.
Florida Senator Bill Nelson claims that only 15.8 million out of 46.2 million recalled inflators have been taken in for repair. More than 8.8 million owners have been notified of the defect, though most were told that there is not yet a suitable fix available.
The equipment in question has been known to explode without notice, sending flying shrapnel throughout the car and causing potential harm to drivers and passengers in the vehicle. Takata has been working for months on this case, paying billions of dollars in settlements and criminal fees as well as seeking a buy-out from competing manufacturers to avoid bankruptcy.
A Takata representative claims that the company "has dramatically increased the production of airbag replacement kits." In total, there are over 100 million faulty inflators in the field today.
Toyota, Subaru, Mazda, and BMW agreed last month to pay $553 million in collective settlements over the ordeal. This does not include legal fees from multiple lawsuits that have been filed across several states, either.
Automakers like Honda and Ford are yet to decide on settlement payouts for their vehicles fitted with the Takata airbag inflators.