(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) released the following statement in response to recent developments in Takata air bag recalls. According to a report by the Senate Commerce Committee released yesterday, Takata falsified data to cover up problems with its products. There are also reports that up to 90 million additional vehicles may be recalled.
“We have no faith in Takata. A company that would manipulate test results is a company that would lie to regulators – and may have for years. Now we know there may be an additional 70 million to 90 million vehicles with potentially lethal airbags currently on the road. These airbags sit in Americans’ cars like ticking time bombs, and we must take action now to get all Takata airbags off the road. Coming on the heels of a Senate Commerce Committee report exposing Takata falsified data to cover up problems with their products, this is even further evidence that this deceptive company is not to be trusted.”
“NHTSA must accelerate the recall of these dangerous airbags. Safety recalls shouldn’t be eventual, they should be immediate. The danger from these exploding airbags isn’t conditional, and neither should be NHTSA’s commitment to get these vehicles off the road. We have a duty to protect the American public, especially when Takata has demonstrated a pernicious disregard for doing so.”
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.