Japanese auto safety parts manufacturer Takaat Corp., at the center of a worldwide crisis of record proportions because of potentially defective airbag inflators, has disclosed in front of US auto safety regulators that it had 265 ruptures during testing.
Takata, US auto safety regulators and a consortium established by the affected automakers are hard at work independently from each other to find the root cause of the defective airbag inflators, which can explode with too much force and send metal debris and other pieces at high velocity inside the cabin. The embattled airbag supplier and ten automakers (eleven after the latest round of recalls) have been calling back more than 50 million autos worldwide since 2008 and the Japanese company started testing the inflators since September 2014. According to the company’s defect reports filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the 265 cases of ruptures happened during ballistic tests of more than 30,000 airbag inflators Takata had sourced from already recalled and repaired vehicles. The majority of tested inflators were originating from high-humidity states across US territories – the focus area of the recalls and investigations.
The Japanese supplier also told the regulators that more than a dozen airbag ruptures have also been reported in vehicles on the road and not covered by any previous recall. The company said it now believes there are also new factors influencing the ruptures, such as vehicle design. The company recently admitted almost 34 million vehicles across the US could have potentially deadly defective airbag inflators, after for months refused to admit the flaws even as regulatory pressure mounted.
Via Automotive News