Traffic officials are warning drivers of 2006 model of the Ford Ranger that the truck's airbags are an "immediate risk to safety".
The July 2017 fatality in a crash in West Virginia brings the total to at least 21 deaths related to the airbags worldwide, with most taking place in the U.S. Ford previously reported a similar death that happened in December 2015 in SC.
Ford said it inspected the vehicle on December 27, confirmed that the inflator ruptured resulting in a driver fatality and notified NHTSA. Takata alongside its USA entity TK Holdings Inc had filed for bankruptcy in June past year after it stated that it was recalling over 100 million of its airbag inflators worldwide towards the end of 2019 because they could inflate with too much pressure, spraying metal fragments and cause heavy injuries to its occupants, and sometimes even death. The inflators can rupture and send deadly metal fragments into the vehicle. It previously reported a similar death in SC that occurred in December 2015.
"Ford is saddened by these tragic losses and offers its honest condolences to the drivers' families", the company said.
The Takata air bag crisis has forced the recall of millions of cars from at least 19 brands since 2013 due to faulty inflators that can cause injury during deployment of the safety device.
Additional air bags are scheduled to be recalled by December 2019, bringing the total number of affected air bags to around 65-70 million.
Japanese auto supplier Takata plans to sell its viable operations to Key Safety Systems, an affiliate of China'sNingo Joyson Electric Corp, for $1.6 billion.
Ford Motor Company has identified approximately 3,000 2006 model year Ranger vehicles in North America with airbag inflators that pose higher risk of rupturing in the event of a crash.
The latest recall by Ford involves vehicles already recalled in 2016. Search using your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN). Just remember that in the Takata air bag recalls, there are priority groups; parts are available only for certain vehicles starting at certain dates.
Get answers to frequently asked questions at NHTSA.gov/recall-spotlight/tak ata-air-bags.