[WASHINGTON, DC] – U.S. Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), members of the Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, released the following joint statement following reports that Takata will recall an additional 35 million airbags:
“This expanded recall of millions more Takata airbags reflects what we have long known about ammonium nitrate being inherently dangerous as an airbag propellant and underscores the need for an immediate recall of all of these potentially lethal airbags. Repeated stopgap partial steps, like todays, will only continue to put drivers, their passengers, and even others on the road at urgent risk. Until all Takata airbags are replaced with truly reliable protective products that don't use ammonium nitrate and have proven that they pass most stringent quality assurance testing standards, Takata’s spiraling record of fatal tragedy will continue.”
The Senators first expressed concerns with NHTSA’s limited recalls and testing of Takata airbags in October 2014, first called on Takata to recall all vehicles with ammonium nitrate-based airbags in August 2015, and subsequently also expressed serious concern about the pace of Takata recalls and repairs. Earlier this month, the senators sent a letter urging President Obama to recall every vehicle with airbags using ammonium nitrate as their propellant, and to use “every tool at his disposal” to accelerate the repair of all vehicles with potentially-lethal Takata airbags.