US: auto safety officials say new Takata-linked fatality most likely image

The US auto safety regulator recently announced a ruptured Takata Corp. airbag was most likely linked in an April 5 car accident that claimed the life of a 22-year-old Louisiana woman, possibly the seventh worldwide victim of the defect.

Japan’s Takata Corp. has been recalling cars equipped with its airbag inflators alongside eleven automakers since 2008, with a tally of more than 53 million globally and almost 34 million in the US alone – the biggest single-product recall in the country’s history. The defective airbag inflators can spray metal debris inside the cabin as they explode with too much force and so far six fatalities and hundreds of injuries had been tied to the flaw. Kylan Rae Langlinais succumbed to the wounds four days after her 2005 Honda Civic impacted a utility pole in an early morning accident, reads a lawsuit filed by her family against Takata and Honda, claiming the driver-side Takata airbag exploded, with the debris severing her carotid artery. Honda said in a statement on Friday that “the air bag inflator rupture that occurred during this crash resulted in the death of the driver, Kylan Langlinais.” Now officials from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which recently announced he huge recall, said the regulator was looking into the available information.

“After examination of the vehicle and other evidence, NHTSA has concluded that a ruptured Takata air bag inflator is likely to have been involved,” commented NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind in a statement, with the car being covered in an earlier Honda recall initiated last year. Honda, the biggest Takata client, detailed the fatal crash car was sold to the current owner back in October 2014 and a notification about the car’s safety campaign was mailed on April 2.

Via Reuters