Having filed class action lawsuits in Georgia, North Carolina and Missouri against Takata and Honda, attorneys at Pope McGlamry are at the forefront of the nationwide Takata airbag litigation proceedings. The litigation was recently consolidated before the Honorable Judge Federico Moreno of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida.
Takata Airbag Lawsuits Swell
To date, over one hundred lawsuits have been brought against Takata as well as several auto-makers including Honda, BMW, Ford, Nissan, Subaru and Toyota.
The litigation concerns defective and highly dangerous airbag inflators manufactured by Takata utilizing ammonium nitrate. Instead of properly deploying to protect occupants, the airbags often detonate or aggressively deploy resulting in airbag-induced contact injury or expulsion of metal debris towards the occupants. To date, at least six people have been killed and 64 have been injured by exploding Takata airbags spurring the recall of over 18 million vehicles.
Takata Fined Per Day
Concurrently, the National Highway and Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) recently imposed a $14,000-per-day fine on Takata due to the manufacturer’s ongoing failure to duly cooperate with the regulatory body’s investigation. Mazda, Honda, Ford and Chrysler have implemented recalls of vehicles equipped with Takata airbags.
Use of Ammonium Nitrate
Lying at the heart of both the Takata proceedings and NHTSA’s investigation are questions surrounding Takata’s use, against industry norms, of highly ignitable ammonium nitrate when designing and manufacturing its airbags. Other airbag manufacturers utilize guanidine nitrate. Recently, engineers who performed engineering reviews of Takata’s airbags in the 1990s came forward and discussed Takata’s disregard for concerns they expressed about ammonium nitrate at that time.
Diminished Value of Automobiles
The Takata airbag litigation concerns not only passengers injured or killed by exploding airbags but also includes claims by vehicle owners for the diminished value of their vehicles due to the recall and unavailability of replacement airbags.
Contact an Auto Defects Attorney
If you or a loved one has been injured by a malfunctioning airbag, please contact Pope McGlamry or submit a case evaluation online to schedule a complimentary legal consultation.