U.S. regulators open probe into air bag inflators, could affect 30 million vehicles


On Sunday, Reuters reported that they had seen a document that showed that U.S. auto safety investigators have initiated a new probe into 30 million vehicles. These automobiles have been built by different automakers and have Takata air bag inflators that could be potentially defective.


On Friday, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) began an engineering analysis on about 30 million vehicles in the nation with models from 2001 through 2019. The regulatory body alerted automakers but has not as yet made the investigation public.


Some of the automakers who have assembled these vehicles with the inflators include the following:


  • BMW
  • Daimler AG
  • Ferrari NV
  • Ford Motor Co.
  • General Motors
  • Honda Motor Co.
  • Mazda
  • Nissan Motor
  • Porsche
  • Stellantis (Chrysler)
  • Subaru
  • Tesla
  • Toyota Motor Corp.
  • Tata Motors (Jaguar Land Rover).


The NHTSA document noted that vehicles that had Takata inflators installed when they were assembled as well as some inflators that had been used in prior recall repairs in vehicles would be investigated.


Earlier, Takata air bag inflators have been recalled all over the world in the largest ever auto safety call, ever. More than 100 million of these inflators have been recalled worldwide of which 67 million were recalled in the U.S. These inflators might explode releasing deadly metal fragments flying in a few instances.


So far 28 deaths have been reported worldwide of which 19 were in the U.S. These Takata air bag inflators have also caused injuries in more than 400 persons.


According to Reuters the NHSTA said in its analysis that no present safety risk had been identified in the Takata inflators, further work was needed to study the risk of non-recalled desiccated inflators. The auto regulatory body believed that further study was needed “to assess the long-term safety of desiccated inflators.”


Both the NHSTA and the automakers declined to comment to date despite requests from multiple news outlets.

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