NHTSA Demands Nationwide Takata Airbag Recall
On November 26, 2014, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued a formal letter to Takata Corp. demanding a national recall of vehicles equipped with its defective airbags. Until this point, recalls have been mainly regional, particularly in high-humidity areas, but NHTSA has determined that an “unreasonable risk of death or serious injury” exists in all defective vehicles regardless of climate. Takata has until December 2, 2014 to respond to the demand or face a potential $7,000-a-day fine per violation if it does not agree to the recall. Almost 8 million vehicles have already been recalled in the U.S. alone after a significant incidence of injury and death was linked to exploding airbags. Two weeks ago, the NHTSA also called on five automakers, Honda, Ford, Chrysler, Mazda, and BMW, to issue nationwide recalls over the airbag safety concerns, but all have refused.