Takata Corporation – a manufacturer of vehicle safety devices, including airbags, seatbelts, and car seats – is now facing multiple fines, lawsuits, and the loss of business due to the revelation that their airbags were manufactured improperly, potentially resulting in fragments of the airbag causing serious injuries upon deployment.
Honda Motor Corp. has now defected from the company and has already turned its back on the manufacturer. Mazda Motor Corp. also stated that their vehicles will no longer use airbag inflators from Takata. Subaru and Mitsubishi manufacturers are also considering the same, according to a recent news report by the Chicago Tribune. In addition to losing Honda and Mazda, Takata also has lost Toyota and Nissan.
Honda surprised the market by pulling from the airbag manufacturer – especially considering that the Japanese businesses had long-standing relationships built on dedication to one another. Unsurprisingly, after the recent announcements, Takata reported a drastic decrease in their earnings.
Earnings and Losses Are Not Takata’s Only Concern
U.S. regulators have now imposed a fine on the Japanese airbag manufacturer which will be up to $200 million for failure to disclose the defect of millions of their airbags to regulators in what was considered a “timely manner.” The NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) has also levied a base fine of $70 million if Takata fails to comply with a consent order issued by the NHTSA. The consent order requires the manufacturer to phase out any manufacture or sale of the defective inflators that are using phase-stabilized ammonium nitrate propellant. Takata claims they have isolated the problem and uncovered the reasons for the injuries and accidents, but they still must comply with the demands to replace these defective airbags and stop the manufacture of them in the future.
Takata’s Issue Falls Under Product Liability
The defective airbags sold by Takata are considered a matter of product liability. Those that have been injured can join class action lawsuits already being formed against the manufacturer.
However, keep in mind that Takata is not the first manufacturer to be hit with multiple fines and lawsuits regarding defective products. Defective products are on the market everyday, especially due to the relaxed safety policies of other countries where these products are being manufactured. Any product can be defective, including:
- Consumer appliances
- Safety devices
Were You Injured by a Defective Product?
If you or a loved one was injured by a defective product, contact the Chicago personal injury attorneys at Malman Law. We are here to aggressively protect your right to compensation. Contact us for your free consultation at 888-247-2160 or fill out our online contact form.