Takata adds 3.3M air bag inflators to massive recall

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Estimates claim that, on a global basis, around 20 people have been killed and more than 180 were reported as injured.

The Japanese air bag maker is recalling frontal air bags in certain 2009, 2010 and 2013 cars by at least 15 automakers. Automakers will provide specific models in paperwork that will be filed later this month with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

In addition to the makes involved in the most recent recall, the NHTSA has a full list of impacted vehicles, including the most recent additions, on their website.

The 3.3 million airbag inflators added Saturday brings the number of recalls up to a grand total of 69 million inflators in 42 million vehicles.

The recalls, which are being managed by NHTSA, are being phased in over the next three years. The tally now stands at approximately 34 million vehicles, making it the largest wave of recalls in US history. NHTSA is prioritizing the recalls, putting older models, those in "highest danger zones" in the first priority group.

Takata uses the chemical ammonium nitrate to create a small explosion and fill airbags quickly in a crash.

The problem: The airbag inflators may explode because the propellant used can degrade over time and exposure to humidity and fluctuating temperatures.

Experts cite that cheating scandals of this nature are not new to the automotive & transportation industry, be it Volkswagen's "defeat devices" or Takata's defective airbag inflators. Of those, only 18.5 million, or 43 percent, have been replaced even though Takata recalls began in 2001.

As per NHTSA, the organization is attentively monitoring the company's progress and is also working on expanding good practices to boost the completion rates. NHTSA says this recall is for select 2013 vehicles that had ever been registered in Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, District of Columbia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia.

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