The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) are demanding that airbag manufacturer, Takata Industries along with automobile manufacturer’s BMW, Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Subaru, and Toyota, expand their airbag recall to include vehicles beyond the initial geographical areas. This decision comes after a recent driver’s side air bag failure in a vehicle outside the current regional recall area, previous fatalities, and many injuries that have been linked to the problem.
The U.S. regional recall has involves millions of vehicles in hot and humid areas where the air bags are prone to failure, including Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Louisiana and parts of Texas along the Gulf of Mexico. Around 16 million cars have been recalled worldwide over the past six years, with more than 10 million of those in the United States. The expanded recall could more than double the amount of vehicles affected by this defect, creating additional supply problems for automakers.
NHTSA issued a special order to Takata on Tuesday, demanding it to provide documents and detailed information on the propellant used in its inflators. Takata, NHTSA, Honda and Chrysler have also been called to testify at a U.S. Senate Commerce Committee hearing on Thursday.
According to NHTSA Deputy Administrator David Friedman, “We now know that millions of vehicles must be recalled to address defective Takata air bags and our aggressive investigation is far from over. We are pushing Takata and all affected manufacturers to ensure the recalls capture the full scope of the problems.” The NHTSA’s demand for a national recall does not cover passenger side air bags, but the agency says it is pushing the auto industry to do tests to make sure current recalls cover all air bags that are defective.