Was Your Airbag Recalled? Learn About Your Legal Rights from an Experienced Airbag Lawyer
Tens of millions of vehicles with model years 1999 and later are currently subject to airbag recalls in the United States. These recalls are due to issues that cause the affected airbags to explode violently rather than deploying safely—and that have resulted in injuries and fatalities in multiple cases. If you or a loved one has been harmed by a recalled airbag, you may be entitled to financial compensation, and you should consult with an airbag lawyer about filing a claim against the manufacturer.
Airbag Recalls in the United States
Here is a look at the recent airbag recalls in the United States:
1. The Takata Defective Airbag Inflator Recall
The National Traffic Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA) and multiple automotive manufacturers have issued recalls for vehicles equipped with Takata airbags manufactured between 1999 and 2017. During this nearly 20-year span, manufacturers sold an estimated 67 million vehicles with defective Takata airbags that are prone to exploding due to long-term exposure to high heat and humidity.
Vehicle owners can enter their vehicle identification number (VIN) on the NHTSA’s website to find out if their Takata airbags have been recalled. Importantly, while the NHTSA and automotive manufacturers have determined that most vehicles equipped with Takata airbags are still okay to drive, they are urging owners not to drive certain specific models. These include:
- 2000-2003 BMW 5 Series (E39) including M5 (certain vehicles)
- 2000-2004 BMW X5s (E53) (certain vehicles)
- 2000-2006 BMW 3 Series (E46) including M3 (certain vehicles)
- 2001-2002 Honda Accord
- 2001-2002 Honda Civic
- 2002 Honda CR-V
- 2002 Honda Odyssey
- 2003 Honda Pilot
- 2002-2003 Acura 3.2 TL
- 2003 Acura 3.2CL
- 2003 Dodge Ram 1500
- 2005-2010 Chrysler 300
- 2005-2010 Dodge Magnum
- 2005-2010 Dodge Charger
- 2005-2010 Dodge Challenger
- 2006 Ford Ranger (certain vehicles)
- 2006 Mazda B-Series (certain vehicles)
Again, this is just the list of vehicles equipped with recalled airbags that the NHTSA and their manufacturers recommend not driving. Far more makes and models are affected by the Takata airbag recall.
2. The Takata Defective NADI Airbag Recall
In addition to the tens of millions of vehicles covered under the Takata defective airbag inflator recall, approximately three million additional vehicles are subject to a recall involving defective Takata non-azide driver inflators (NADI). As the NHTSA explains, the airbags subject to this recall are also at risk for exploding; or, alternatively, they may fail to fully inflate in the event of deployment. Vehicles covered under this recall include certain models manufactured by the following automakers between 1997 and 2002:
According to the NHTSA, BMW is recommending that owners of certain 199 323i and 328i vehicles not drive until their airbags have been replaced. The other vehicles covered under this recall are not currently subject to do-not-drive recommendations, although an airbag explosion or a failure in the event of a collision remains a possibility.
3. The ARC Automotive Airbag Recalls
In early 2023, the NHTSA sent a letter to ARC Automotive requesting that the company issue a voluntary recall for approximately 67 million of its airbags (the same number as the Takata defective airbag inflator recall) due to concerns that ruptures in the company’s airbag inflators were responsible for multiple injuries and fatalities. The NHTSA’s letter notes that multiple automotive manufacturers have already issued recalls due to the issues outlined in the letter. The vehicles covered under these recalls include (as of the date of the letter):
- 2008-2017 Buick Enclave
- 2010-2011 Chevrolet Malibu
- 2013-2017 Chevrolet Traverse
- 2015 GMC Acadia
- 2016 Audi and VM (various models)
- 2017 BMW X5 sDrive35i, X5 xDrive35i, X5 xDrive50i, X5 xDrive35d and X5 xDrive40e
- 2017 Ford Mustang and F150 Pick-Up
Vehicle owners can use the link to the NHTSA’s website above to find out if their vehicles are subject to their manufacturers’ ARC Automotive airbag recalls as well. While ARC Automotive has rejected claims that its airbags suffer from a widespread defect, the NHTSA’s letter points to numerous specific instances in which issues with the company’s airbags have been blamed for drivers’ and passengers’ injuries and deaths.
Filing a Claim After an Accident Involving a Recalled Airbag
With well over 100 million vehicles potentially affected by defective airbags, replacing all of the airbags that have been recalled (and that may be recalled in the future) will be a multi-year legal process. As a result, many people will have no choice but to continue driving their vehicles despite the well-known risks involved.
So, what are your legal rights if you or a family member is involved in an accident involving a recalled airbag?
In this scenario, you may be entitled to significant financial compensation for your injuries or your loved one’s death. Our firm is handling cases involving recalled airbags nationwide. Airbag injury lawyer, David P. Willis is a Board Certified Personal Injury Trial Lawyer since 1988 and has been representing injured clients against product makers and the automobile manufacturers for 40+ years.
When you contact us about your (or your loved one’s) accident involving a recalled airbag, we will:
1. Conduct a Thorough Assessment of Your Legal Rights
We will carefully examine all of the factors involved in the accident to assess your legal rights. Based on this assessment, we will determine if you have a claim for an airbag defect.
2. Determine How Much You May Be Entitled To Recover
If you have a claim for an airbag defect, we will also determine how much you may be entitled to recover. Victims and their families can seek just compensation for their financial and non-financial losses. Based on this determination, you will be able to make an informed decision about whether to move forward.
3. Take All Necessary Legal Action on Your Behalf
If you decide to move forward, we will take all necessary legal action on your behalf. While we have been successful in negotiating settlements with automotive manufacturers and their insurers in many cases, we will not hesitate to file a lawsuit in court if necessary.
Discuss Your Claim with Airbag Lawyer David P. Willis for Free
For more information about filing a claim related to a recalled airbag, contact us today. Give us a call or send us a message online to schedule a free consultation with airbag lawyer David P. Willis.