10 Automotive Scandals That Continue To Affect The Industry
10 Automotive Scandals That Continue To Affect The Industry

10 Automotive Scandals That Continue To Affect The Industry

Stephanie Schoppert - February 20, 2017

10 Automotive Scandals That Continue To Affect The Industry
Takata Seatbelt. Reference.com

Takata Recalls

The Takata Corporation of Japan has been responsible for some of the largest automotive recalls in history. The first major recall came in 1995 when the NHTSA announced that more than 8 million Japanese vehicles made between 1986 until 1991 would be recalled in order to replace the seat belts. An investigation by the administration looked into numerous complaints made by Honda owners that complained their seat belts did not latch or that they released during accidents or without notice. This was a deadly problem, and the investigation found that it was much bigger than they initially anticipated.

The initial investigation only focused on Honda vehicles, but it was later found that other Japanese imports featured the defective belts. In total, 11 manufacturers were affected and many of them chose to offer lifetime warranties for seat belts on their cars in addition to performing the required recalls. At first the manufacturers were not as cooperative some of the blaming the defect on user error.

But a nine-month investigation determined that parts of the seat belt were made from ABS plastic. This plastic would become brittle and break after prolonged exposure to ultraviolet light. The broken pieces would then get jammed in the latching mechanism of the seat belt.

The seat belt recall was brought to mind again when the Takata Corporation faced an even bigger recall in 2014. It was discovered that cars manufactured from 2001 until 2015 included airbags made by the Takata Corporation that were defective. The NHTSA launched an investigation and over the next two years’ massive recalls were scheduled. The Takata Corporation refused to cooperate with the investigation leading the NHTSA to fine them $14,000 a day. By the of the investigation and numerous recalls more than 42 million vehicles were affected, 11 people died and 180 were injured.

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