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Drivers advised to check cars after faulty Takata airbags cause 3 deaths in Thailand

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Car drivers in Thailand are being advised to check their airbags after three Thai people were killed and another three were seriously injured by faulty airbags from now-defunct Japanese automotive parts company Takata Corporation.

This isn’t a new issue. The first defective airbag accident transpired in 2008 and since then 32 known fatalities have been recorded causing over 100 million cars throughout the world to be recalled to get airbag replacements.

At first, Takata denied there was a problem before bowing to pressure and admitting that the ammonium nitrate used in the manufacturing process caused too much pressure and made the bags explode.

The problem is with the airbag’s inflator, a metal cartridge loaded with propellant wafers, which in some cases has ignited with explosive force. If the inflator housing ruptures in a crash, metal shards from the airbag can be sprayed throughout the passenger cabin

Takata had to pay out over US$850 million in compensation to different car brands and went bankrupt in 2017.

Over 1.7 million cars in Thailand from eight brands including Honda, BMW, Nissan, Toyota, Mitsubishi, Mazda, Chevrolet, and Ford, use Takata airbags.

The Thai Automotive Industry Association revealed that they have been recalling cars with the issue since 2009. However, a survey released on March 10 of this year revealed that over 680,000 cars in Thailand are still loaded with the potentially lethal weapons.

The Thai Facebook news page Drama-Addict brought the topic to the public’s attention again yesterday. Drama-Addict revealed that three people died and three were injured by the Takata airbags according to the Forensic Physician Association of Thailand, and the latest accident happened a few days ago.

One victim died as a result of the Takata airbag. He had a 3.5-centimeter-wide chest wound. The wound was so deep that it penetrated his backbone around the neck. A metal part was also found in his backbone.

The page informed readers that, despite the company’s bankruptcy, Takata airbags are still used in many cars around the world.

Drama-Addict advises drivers to check their airbag status on the website www.checkairbag.com or call the Department of Land Transportation’s hotline at 1584. Vehicle owners could get a free airbag replacement at a showroom or service centre.

 

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Petpailin, or Petch, is a Thai translator and writer for The Thaiger focusing on Thai news and what's happening in Thailand. She is a news writer who stops reading news on the weekends to spend more time cafe hopping and petting dwarf shrimp.

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