US: regulators claim 19 million vehicles in need of Takata airbag replacements image

The top US auto safety regulator, the NHTSA, has announced recently that flawed Takata Corp. airbag inflators are still in around 19 million US autos, while a root cause to the issue hasn’t been found yet.

The total of 19.2 million vehicles have around 23.4 million airbag inflators and have been manufactured by a tally of eleven carmakers, according to a NHTSA official. The number of inflators is larger than of vehicles due to the fact that around four million autos have possibly flawed airbag inflators on both driver and passenger sides, explained the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration official. The official made the comments during a telephone conference call with representatives of the media to explain further the problems that called for several US congressional hearings. Since 2008, Japan’s auto safety parts manufacturer Takata has recalled millions of vehicles worldwide because of the defective airbag inflators, which could explode with too much force, causing a rupture and spreading metal debris and other hazardous materials inside the cabin at high velocity.

The update also lowers the total count of the initial estimations, after a few months ago Takata and the NHTSA announced that at least 30 million flawed airbag inflators could be found in US autos. The reduced count comes after the officials found they partially double-counted some airbags and vehicles. While the auto safety officials and Takata still search for a root cause of the defect, a consortium comprising the involved automakers have also started their own investigation to find the reason behind the malfunction.

Via Reuters