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Many Obstacles Stand In The Way of Effectively Replacing The Takata Airbag

It seems as if the Takata airbag recall may be creating more problems than it solves

Monday, February 18, 2019 - Motor vehicle owners attempting to comply with the Takata airbag recall are being turned away by auto dealerships if the vehicle is not one on the dealership's high priority list. Drivers of vehicles equipped with the exploding Tataka airbag are complaining that they cannot get the airbags replaced. Dealerships are overwhelmed by the millions upon millions of vehicles that need replacements to the faulty Takata airbag as well as difficulty finding the skilled labor to actually make the swap. The relative dangers of the Takata airbag have been prioritized so that dealerships are handling only those vehicles, like the Ford F10 Ranger, that are in the most critical risk for causing injuries or deaths. Many vehicle owners are being told to "wait their turn" when they bring their vehicles in if they have not received an official notice. Trying to stay organized may be the reason so many millions of Takata airbag vehicles remain on the roads today.

If a motor vehicle owner hears that their vehicle is subject to the Takata airbag recall through social media, the internet, or word of mouth, they are urged to stop driving the vehicle and to call the dealership to make an appointment. If they have not received official notice of the recall through the mail they may be turned away. To make matters worse, these same vehicle owners may soon be unable to re-register their vehicles unless they have complied with the airbag replacement recall. Australia, for example, has recently amended existing motor vehicle safety legislation called the Road Transportation Act and will, according to, "refuse to register a registrable vehicle if the Authority is satisfied that the vehicle, or any part of the vehicle, is subject to a recall notice under section 122 of the Australian Consumer Law." Similar legislation is pending in the US and other countries.

Another fly in the ointment of the Takata airbag recall is the difficulty that auto dealerships around the world are having in complying with existing environmental laws prohibiting them from disposing of the old airbags. A spokesperson from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), talking with told its readership that the goal of the EPA is to loosen the hazmat regulations pertaining to disposing airbags so that "auto dealers and scrap recyclers across the country protect public health and properly dispose of these defective airbags inflators." The EPA is simultaneously trying not to encourage vendors from throwing the airbags into the ordinary garbage by creating processing facilities around the nations designated to handle the regulatory requirements involved in safely disposing of the airbags.

Yet another adverse side effect of the Takata airbag replacement crisis is the geometric increase in airbag theft that is happening now and is increasing every day. A cottage market has developed for criminals working for unscrupulous airbag replacement vendors who are willing to purchase airbags that have been stolen from 2018 and 2019 vehicles and use them as replacement airbags. It takes less than a minute for a thief to break into a vehicle and pop out the airbag from the driver's steering column. According to reports, airbag theft has increased by ten-fold in some areas and the newer Honda and Acura vehicles the most at risk for airbag theft.

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OnderLaw, LLC is a St. Louis personal injury law firm handling serious injury and death claims across the country. Its mission is the pursuit of justice, no matter how complex the case or strenuous the effort. The Onder Law Firm has represented clients throughout the United States in pharmaceutical and medical device litigation such as Pradaxa, Lexapro and Yasmin/Yaz, where the firm's attorneys held significant leadership roles in the litigation, as well as Actos, DePuy, Risperdal and others. The Onder Law Firm won $197 million in three talcum powder ovarian cancer lawsuits in St. Louis in 2016 and other law firms throughout the nation often seek its experience and expertise on complex litigation.