South Carolina driver dies in airbag inflator explosion

Detroit (AP) — South Carolina driver is the latest person killed by an exploding Takata airbag inflator.

Honda said Wednesday that a crash involving the Honda Accord in 2002 in Lancaster County, South Carolina, exploded the airbag of a broken driver. The company did not provide details of the January 9 crash near Charlotte, North Carolina, nor did it identify the person who was killed.

Honda officials and the National Road Safety Authority inspected car and airbag parts on Wednesday and determined that the inflator had ruptured, the company said. The death toll is 19th in the United States since 2009 and 28th in the world caused by a broken inflator.

Takata used volatile ammonium nitrate to cause a small explosion that inflated the airbag in the event of a collision. However, chemicals can become more volatile over time when exposed to the humidity of the air. The explosion could blow off the metal canister and throw debris into the cabin.

This issue resulted in the largest series of automatic recalls in US history, recalling at least 63 million inflators. As of last year, the US government has stated that more than 11.1 million have not been amended. About 100 million inflators are being recalled worldwide.

Most of the fatalities occur in the United States, but also in Australia and Malaysia.

Honda said it has shared all the information with NHTSA and will continue to cooperate with the latest investigations.

According to the company, the Accord in the South Carolina accident was recalled in April 2011. Since June 2011, the company has made more than 100 attempts to reach car owners, including mail notifications, phone calls, emails, and even direct visits. Said the statement.

“Our records show that the recall repair was not completed,” the statement said.

According to the company, the murdered driver is not the registered owner of the Accord, and Honda does not know if the driver knew about the unrepaired recall.

According to Honda spokesman Chris Martin, car ownership has changed several times, most recently in October 2020. According to Martin, the company sent a recall notice to its current owners on November 17, 2020.

Honda states that it has a good supply of replacement inflators, especially urging people to recall and repair older models.

The driver can access the following URL to see if the vehicle has been recalled. Enter your 17-digit vehicle identification number.

The recall bankrupted Takata in Japan and brought criminal accusations against the company. Ultimately, it was purchased by a Chinese-owned auto parts supplier.