Honda asks external audit on Takata airbags injury and death reporting image

The Japanese automaker has opened the path in September for a third-party audit to find out if the company underreported to US federal authorities the number of fatalities and injuries related to the Takata airbag recalls.

The Tokyo-based company announced it would soon share the investigation’s conclusion with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and moved to announce the audit after allegations coming from the Center for Auto Safety.

The safety watchdog group claimed that Honda failed to report to the NHTSA at least two injury-and-death incidents, also asking the US Justice Department to begin a criminal probe. According to CAR, the failure to report the claims was an oversight that seriously interposed with the regulators’ efforts to detect safety-related hazards. Honda said it didn’t include in reports sent to the NHTSA until last month verbal claims of fatalities and injuries – which led to a very low number of reported incidents.

The issue revolves around Takata Corp’s airbags – a global supplier for Honda, Toyota and Nissan – which have been found to potentially explode because of a defective inflator, sending shrapnel and debris inside the cabin. Honda, the largest auto customer for Takata, has so far recalled 6 million autos since the problem was detected back in 2008.

Via Bloomberg