Cars and Trucks

Hundreds of Thousands of Potentially Killer Airbags Still On Texas Roads

Local car dealerships will replace potentially deadly Takata-brand airbags free of charge.
Local car dealerships will replace potentially deadly Takata-brand airbags free of charge. Screenshot
Takata-brand airbags were recalled all the way back in 2008 after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration discovered life-threatening malfunctions that could shoot dangerous metal shrapnel at car passengers when the airbags deployed.

But even though 19 people have been killed by these defective airbags and hundreds more have been injured by them, and despite over a decade of recall notice letters, postcards and emails to car owners warning about their dangers, safety advocates SafeAirbags.com claim “more than 17 million Takata airbags remain on U.S. roads, including hundreds of thousands in Texas.”

SafeAirbags.com is working with car manufacturers and the NHTSA to alert the public about just how dangerous these airbags are. The group announced Wednesday that the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles will be sending out yet another wave of notice letters this week to all Texans driving vehicles that still have the defective Takata equipment installed, letting them know that their potentially killer airbags can be replaced free of charge at their local car dealerships.

click to enlarge Takata airbags were recalled in 2008 after they were found to sometimes shoot deadly metal shrapnel at passengers when deployed. - SCREENSHOT
Takata airbags were recalled in 2008 after they were found to sometimes shoot deadly metal shrapnel at passengers when deployed.
Screenshot
Patrick Juneau, SafeAirbags.com’s outreach director, warned Wednesday that “After nearly a decade long recall, many owners are still not taking immediate action, either because they have ignored the repeated safety recall notices, or do not understand the severity of the situation.”

In a press release, the group highlighted vehicles "made by BMW, Daimler Vans, Daimler Trucks, Stellantis (formerly FCA), Ferrari, Fisker, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Jaguar Land Rover, Mazda, McLaren, Mercedes-Benz, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Subaru, Tesla, Toyota and Volkswagen” were the ones most likely to still have recalled airbags onboard.

Rather than waiting to see if a warning letter comes in the mail (and let’s face it: those who are still getting notices at this point have likely been ignoring other notices for years now), Juneau and SafeAirbags.com spokeswoman Amanda Klingbail recommend that folks visit SafeAirbags.com to check if their vehicles' airbags have been recalled by entering in their cars' brand and model or Vehicle Identification Numbers.

Free repairs at local dealerships for affected cars can be scheduled by calling 1-844-724-0295, or by texting FIX to the same number.

“It is absolutely critical to take the time to check if your vehicle has been recalled and have affected airbags repaired,” Juneau said. “Make it a priority to protect yourself and your passengers from defective airbags.”
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Schaefer Edwards is a staff writer at the Houston Press who covers local and regional news. A lifelong Texan and adopted Houstonian, he loves NBA basketball and devouring Tex-Mex while his cat watches in envy.
Contact: Schaefer Edwards