Honda Motors is now under federal investigation as the car manufacturer allegedly failed to report deaths and injuries related to defective Takata airbags.
Takata airbags have been the cause of dozens of recall announcements between 2013 and 2014. Worldwide, more than 14 million vehicles have been recalled.
In September, a New York Times article on Takata airbags revealed that Honda Motors knew about an airbag explosion as early as 2004, but did not inform regulators. At least three more instances in which the defective airbag inflators ruptured were reported to Honda by 2007. Although the automaker knew about several incidences, they did not disclose injury and fatality counts until 2011.
An Office of Defects Investigation resume notes that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is concerned that Hondas reporting failures go beyond the Takata incidents. Honda has been ordered to submit, under oath, documents outlining its reported procedures and any injuries and deaths they failed to report to the NHTSA.
Honda started its own internal audit of its reporting and said they would be sharing their findings with the safety administration. They have until Dec. 1 to collect and file their findings with the NHTSA.
The investigation is similar to the General Motors debacle from earlier this year, which eventually went on to congressional hearings and the creation of a compensation fund for victims and their families.
A lawsuit has already been filed against Takata Corp. and Honda Motors by vehicle owners who believe their vehicles have lost resale value as a result of these airbag recalls. Additionally, the vehicle owners allege that they have suffered inconveniences as they continue to drive vehicles with faulty airbags while Takata Corp. continues to produce new, safer airbags to replace the defective ones.
Have you or someone you love been injured by a defective airbag during an auto accident? The Takata airbag lawyers at Gordon & Doner can help you determine what your legal options are. You may be eligible to file a claim for damages you suffered.