The eleven automakers that have been affected in the US by the Takata airbag inflator safety crisis and recalled millions of vehicles have loaded the ID numbers of the affected autos into a searchable system.
The US safety regulators recently announced that consumers and government officials can easily and freely analyze the data, with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration adding it would sift through the data provided by the eleven carmakers to see if their Vehicle Identification Numbers (VINs) match with the figures brought forth by Japan’s Takata. The regulator and the auto safety supplier previously said around 34 million autos in the US were affected by the recall, the biggest single product safety campaign in the country’s history. Now NHTSA’s Safercar.gov website can be searched through the available VIN data by owners to see if their vehicle is part of the recall process. The airbag inflator issue has been so far linked to seven fatalities and hundreds of injuries – the inflators can explode with too much force, sending metal debris and other shrapnel inside the cabin at high velocity.
The recall records are hard to be analyzed because some of the recalled vehicles would only be affected by one or the other front airbags – either the driver or passenger side, though some of them might need both to be replaced. Additionally, while the US regulators, a consortium of the affected automakers and Takata itself are investigating the root cause of the defect, warnings have been issued that when the issue is uncovered, some of the already replaced airbags might need a second fix.