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Posts Tagged ‘airbags’

Are Your Car’s Airbags Ready for Retirement?

Growing signs that airbags can begin to fail -- to possibly deadly consequences -- as they age.

by on Aug.12, 2016

Airbags are intended to protect you in a crash, but as the Takata case shows, they can be deadly if they don't work right.

Following the recent death of a Canadian motorist, federal safety regulators in the U.S. have expanded a probe that could lead to the recall of 8 million or more vehicles to replace faulty airbags.

If that scenario sounds familiar, it echoes the situation touched off by more than a dozen deaths in vehicles using defective airbags provided by Japanese auto supplier Takata Corp. Ultimately, as many as 50 million vehicles using Takata airbags could face recall. But the latest probe involves a different supplier, American-based ARC Automotive.

The Last Word!

Both the Takata and ARC airbags may over-inflate during a crash, sending deadly shrapnel spewing into the passenger compartment. But a series pf separate recalls announced just since April of this year, targeted more than 4.5 million other vehicles whose airbags may not function at all during a crash. And that could be just hint of an even bigger issue that could eventually pose a safety risk for virtually every vehicle on the road.

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GM Phasing Out Vehicles Without Airbags

All models worldwide will offer airbags, other safety features by 2019.

by on Apr.15, 2016

The Chinese-made export version of the Chevrolet Sail got zero stars in Latin American crash test.

After flunking a widely reported crash test in Latin America, General Motors will reverse course and add not only airbags but a variety of other safety features in all vehicles it sells worldwide.

The move could prompt other mainstream manufacturers to follow suit, despite the added cost, as government regulators and safety advocates around the world press to lower a global highway death total estimated at 1.25 million last year.

The Last Word!

GM says it now plans to spend about $5 billion to bring its worldwide fleet up to higher safety standards, a move that will target emerging markets such as Africa, Latin America and smaller Asian countries like Vietnam and Indonesia. Chinese regulators have already been ramping up safety requirements in recent years.

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When Airbags Kill

Designed as lifesavers, problems and recalls mount.

by on Feb.12, 2013

Honda has recalled millions of vehicles due to airbag defects, including the 2011 Odyssey.

They’re designed to save lives and reduce potential serious injuries, but a search of federal records reveals that a surprising number of Americans have been killed or injured due to problems with vehicle airbag systems.

In fact, defects involving the devices have been among the most common factor in the surge in safety-related recalls over the last several years. A total of 1.5 million vehicles have already been targeted by airbag recalls ordered by Honda and Toyota this year, with 22 separate recalls involving 18 different brands in 2012 involving airbag defects.

“It’s a complex system and that complexity implies more components, Honda spokesman Chris Martin told USA Today.

Your Safety Source!

The maker has had some of the most serious problems with airbag defects in recent years, including a recall in January that involved nearly 750,000 Pilot and Odyssey models. Missing rivets on an airbag cover could cause the devices to fail to inflate properly, noted the maker, “increasing the risk of injury in a crash.”

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NHTSA Investigating Airbag Supplier Behind Four Recalls

Probe follows news of expanded Honda recall.

by on Feb.22, 2012

The 2012 Honda Civic is one of the vehicles covered by the recent spate of airbag recalls.

Federal safety regulators have launched an investigation of a major Swedish-based airbag supplier linked to recent recalls by four separate Japanese automakers.

That list includes Toyota, Nissan, Subaru and Honda – the latter maker announcing a recall early this month that was then doubled in size last week, though the total number of vehicles covered by the two announcements is still less than 1,000.  In all, the four automakers have now recalled about 2,700 vehicles.

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The NHTSA probe has centered on the U.S. arm of supplier Autoliv, which told the federal safety agency it shipped about 10,500 potentially defective airbag inflators to those four makers and two other airbag manufacturers.

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GM Introduces World’s First Front-Center Airbag

New system should reduce side-impact crash deaths, injuries.

by on Sep.29, 2011

Crash dummies demonstrte General Motors' new front-center air bag during a side impact collision .

General Motors will introduce the world’s first front-center airbag, a technology the maker claims can help reduce injuries and fatalities in side-impact crashes.

There was a time when manufacturers played a numbers game with cupholders, but these days, it seems, they’re focused on a more significant bit of math: how many airbags they can squeeze into a vehicle.

While this may be a bit of one-upsmanship, it clearly does deliver benefits that go beyond the ability to have two cups of coffee readily at hand at any moment.  A new study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, for example, lists the expanded use of airbags as one of the reasons why the number of deaths in crashes involving a car and a SUV have dropped by as much as two-thirds over the last decade.  (For more on that story, Click Here.)

“The front center airbag has real potential to save lives in side crashes,” said Adrian Lund, president of the insurance Institute for Highway Safety, during a joint news conference with General Motors.

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