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Third Death Linked to Defective Takata Air Bags

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Jarod Cassidy3 years ago

A third death has been linked to defective Takata air bags which can send heated pieces of metal throughout the car upon deploying.

Coroner’s Report Cites “Foreign Object Inside Air Bag”

According to Reuters, 47-year-old Devin Xu died in September of last year when he was involved in an auto accident in the parking lot of a Los Angeles bank. Police reports stated Xu’s 2002 Acura sedan accelerated, striking three cars before finally colliding with a building.

In a report, the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Department noted “apparent facial trauma due to [a] foreign object inside [the] air bag,” and cited “two tears on the air bag itself.” The coroner determined Xu’s death was caused by head injuries sustained during the accident.

Xu’s death is now part of a larger investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) into whether certain Takata air bags were improperly sealed. Complaints claim mistakes made during the air bags’ manufacturing process can lead to the air bags inflating with excessive force and rupturing, spraying shrapnel at occupants.

16 Million Vehicles Recalled Since 2008

Since 2008, Takata has recalled more than 16 million vehicles believed to be affected by the air bag defect. So far, two other deaths have been linked to the defective air bags, including one in which a mother bled to death in front of her children after her neck was penetrated by a two-inch metal strip that was ejected from her airbag.

The Center for Auto Safety, a watchdog group, has since accused Honda, maker of Acura vehicles, of underreporting injuries and deaths linked to the defective Takata air bags. The group has issued a letter to NHTSA demanding a criminal investigation on the matter.


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