Recycled Takata Airbags Raise Safety Concerns
Car recalls are supposed to make the roads safer for everyone by alerting vehicle owners of parts and other defects that could cause big problems if left unaddressed. Although recalls are fairly common in the auto industry, they remain an imperfect solution. That’s probably the biggest takeaway from the recent news that many cars may still have defective Takata airbags in them, despite the fact that the Japanese parts maker and a number of car manufacturers have recalled some 40 million vehicles around the globe to replace the faulty safety devices.
Takata airbags have been “recycled” into cars that were not included in the recalls, a CBS affiliate in Miami recently reported. That’s because Takata airbags have long been used as replacement parts in vehicles that didn’t originally roll off the manufacturing lot with the defective safety devices in them. In many cases, drivers may not even know that their cars have Takata airbags.
That’s a problem. The airbags were recalled beginning back in 2013 because of a defect that could cause them deploy, rupture and send shards of metal, glass and other material into the car. The malfunction was linked to a number of deaths, including that of a Georgia man killed when the airbag in his Ford Ranger deployed and exploded while the man was driving on a South Carolina highway.
Legal Protections for California Car Owners
The latest Takata news is an unfortunate reminder of the serious danger that defective cars and parts can pose for anyone on the road.
It’s important for California car owners to understand that you have some legal rights. That includes under the state’s lemon law, which essentially requires car makers to fix certain defects while the vehicle is under warranty.
The law obligates a manufacturer to take specific steps to repair certain defects. If those efforts are not successful, the car maker is required by law to compensate the owner for the purchase price and/or down payment and financing charges. In some cases, the manufacturer may also offer to replace the car instead. The manufacturer is also on the hook for related expenses like car rentals, towing and repair costs.
The law applies to both new and used cars, if repair attempts happen during the vehicle’s warranty period.
Talk With an Experienced California Lemon Law Lawyer
If you’re a California car owner driving a lemon, it is vital that you consult an experienced lawyer to consider your rights an options. The California Lemon Law lawyers at the Bickel Law Firm have represented hundreds of clients in defective vehicle cases across the state. We understand the significant stress that can come with haggling with car dealers and manufacturers. Our lawyers work aggressively to resolve these cases for the people that we represent.
Our offices are conveniently located in San Diego, Los Angeles and San Francisco. Call us at (888) 800-1983 or contact us online to speak with an attorney.