Multiple Injuries, One Fatality Related to Honda Airbag Modules Recalled in Alabama, Nationwide
An automobile accident is bad enough when another driver makes an error causing you serious injury, but no one expects that the safety equipment designed to protect you in a car crash will actually be the cause of physical injuries or possibly death. Yet, this is why Honda is recalling nearly 500,000 of its Civic and Accord models, as well as some Acura cars, many of which are being driven in Birmingham, Mobile, Huntsville and other cities throughout Alabama.
As a Birmingham personal injury lawyer, I’ve handled many automotive defective equipment cases, but this one is perhaps worse in that it involves a car part that is supposed to save lives, not kill people. According to reports, the defective components are part of these cars’ steering wheel airbag system. During operation, portions of the airbag inflation system can break off and be propelled at the driver or passengers.
One fatality has already been reported, as well as several other non-fatal injuries, which involve this specific airbag defect. Back in November of last year, Honda announced it would recall some of its 2001 model year Accord and Civic sedans, but now the company has expanded that recall to include another 440,000 cars.
According to news reports, the potentially life-threatening defect is part is the vehicle’s driver-side airbag inflator assembly, which can rupture as a result of excessive air pressure and potentially cause metal fragments to shoot out through the airbag, possibly hitting vehicle occupants.
I know there are many people who drive Honda cars and I worry for them if this defect is not fixed soon. Being an Alabama personal injury attorney, I understand how this type of vehicle problem can only make an already bad automobile crash much worse. Nobody can imagine that an automotive safety system will actually hurt them, but in this case it could easily happen, which is why Honda is now recalling the affected vehicles.
The safety recall covers a number of 2001 and 2002 Accords, 2001 Civics and some 2002 and 2003 Acura TL models. The driver's side airbag is the defective component that needs to be replaced on the affected vehicles. Owners can check to see if their vehicle is affected by visiting Honda’s owner website and logging on. Honda has encouraged its customers to wait until they receive a recall notice before going to a dealership, since it may take a while for the parts to be in stock.
Honda recalls 440,000 cars for airbag risk, MSNBC.com, July 31, 2009