Takata airbags recall in Australia adds 1M vehicles to list

By @chelean on
The logo of Takata Corp is seen on its display at a showroom for vehicles in Tokyo, Japan, February 9, 2017. Picture taken February 9, 2017.
The logo of Takata Corp is seen on its display at a showroom for vehicles in Tokyo, Japan, February 9, 2017. Picture taken February 9, 2017. Reuters/Toru Hanai

More than 1 million cars in Australia will be recalled because of defective Takata airbags. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has published the list of vehicles affected by the recall, which now adds to about 4 million.

The list adds the Mercedes Benz C Class, Audi A5, Ford Mondeo, Volkswagen Gold and Toyota Yaris among others. The compulsory recall, issued by Assistant to the Treasurer Michael Sukkar, was based on extensive evidence provided by the ACCC, which includes a reasonably foreseeable use of vehicles with defective Takata airbags, as well as one or more suppliers of vehicles with the defective airbags have not taken satisfactory action to prevent possible injuries.

It requires suppliers of defective Takata airbags to replace those parts by Dec. 31, 2010, or later in some instances approved by the ACCC. Some of the vehicles in the list will be recalled immediately, while others will be scheduled on a rolling basis. The list of vehicles affected and their scheduled recall initiation dates can be found here.

The ACCC added that there are still 25,000 of the older Takata airbags, known as “alpha bags” and are deemed to be the most dangerous, on the road.

“The alpha airbags really are incredibly worrying, there was a fault in the manufacturing of some airbags in the early 2000s and there is a much greater chance that they will deploy and harm or kill people than the other airbags,” ACCC deputy chair Delia Rickard was quoted by the ABC as saying. “If you have an alpha bag, what you need to do is stop driving it immediately, contact your manufacturer or dealer, arrange for them to come and tow it away, do not drive that bag.”

According to AAP, about 2.8 million vehicles were under “active recall” at the end of April. This means that consumers had been or were being contacted. Of those vehicles, 1.9 million have already had their airbags replaced, which leaves 900,000 vehicles yet to be completed.

There have been 23 reported deaths and 230 injuries worldwide caused by the Takata airbags. In Australia, there is one death and one serious injury reported to date.

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