Honda has recalled 1.1 million vehicles as part of an ongoing recall of Takata airbags due to faulty airbag inflators that can explode unexpectedly.
Recall Of 1.1 Million Honda Vehicles Announced
The recall of 1.1 million Honda and Acura vehicles was announced today as part of an ongoing recall of millions of vehicles from several automakers due to a faulty airbag inflator in Takata airbags.
“The automotive industry is facing an unprecedented challenge in the recall and replacement of millions of Takata airbag inflators,” a statement from Honda said.
“We want to assure you that Honda is committed to addressing the needs and concerns of our customers with vehicles affected by this issue. We stand behind the safety and quality of our products. The protection of the drivers and passengers in our vehicles is our utmost concern, and we urge all owners of affected vehicles to seek repair immediately.”
The company is offering free repairs of the defect at authorized Honda and Acura dealers. A full list of the recalled Honda and Acura models is available on an informational website Honda has set up as part of its recall effort.
Faulty Air Bag Inflator Can Be Lethal
Today’s recall was prompted by an accident involving a Honda Minivan in Maryland where Takata airbags in Honda vehicles thought to be safe turned out to be defective, according to an Associated Press report.
The Takata airbags currently being recalled uses ammonium nitrate to inflate the airbag during a collision by causing a small explosion. The problem is that the chemical can deteriorate over time because of heat and humidity, and this can cause the canister its contained in to rupture, spraying out shrapnel into the passenger compartment.
At least 23 people are known to have been killed by the faulty inflators and hundreds of others injured.
In the Maryland crash, the 2004 Honda Odyssey minivan involved had an updated Takata airbag that was thought to be safe. The updated air bag inflator uses a desiccant, a type of chemical that absorbs moisture, to help stabilize the ammonium nitrate.
Honda and US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration discovered during their investigation of the accident, however, that the air bag inflator had also ruptured. This has prompted Honda to recall many vehicles that had been previously recalled over the original faulty air bag inflators so that Honda can replace the part used in the first attempt at a repair.
Not all vehicles were repaired using the same defective part, however, so Honda urges all Honda and Acura owners to check their website to see if their vehicle needs to be brought back to a dealer for repair.
Largest Automotive Recall Effort in US History
The Takata airbag recalls overall comprise the largest recall effort of any part in US automotive history. As many as 70 million air bag inflators will have been recalled by the end of the year, with about 100 million inflators set to be recalled worldwide.