Feds Investigate Airbag Sensors In Kia and Nissan Vehicles
The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has stepped up its probe into issues with weight sensors that could deactivate passenger-side airbags in nearly a million Nissan and Infiniti vehicles and opened an investigation into similar problems in about 190,000 Kia vehicles.
According to a Law360 news report, the investigation was launched on Sept. 1 potentially affecting 186,000 Kia Spectras from 2007 to 2009.
It ended up escalating to 986,826 Nissan and Infiniti vehicles encompassing eight different models from 2013 and 2014.
NHTSA opened an initial investigation into the reported problem with the Spectra sensor mats inside the passenger-side seats, which use weight to determine whether or not the front passenger seat is occupied and turns the airbag on or off accordingly.
The agency upgraded its previous recall query into an engineering analysis to further investigate the issue after it continued to receive more complaints. So far, 1,271 complaints have been reported by Nissan and Infiniti owners, including two reports of crashes and one report of injury.
Nissan reported the problem last year and recalled 990,000 vehicles in April 2014, but the owners’ complaints said the sensor defect was still present, even after a software update was supposed to have fixed it. NHTSA received 43 complaints about the Kia Spectra. Drivers are asking why Kia never issued a recall to fix the problem. The company has said no injuries were reported as a result of this problem.
Auto Product Liability Issues
Airbags are critical safety devices in our vehicles, which we have come to rely on to provide us with that extra layer of protection. When airbags fail to deploy in the event of a crash, the consequences can be devastating.
Failure to deploy can cause injuries including brain injuries, spinal cord trauma, broken bones and internal injuries. When a car accident occurs and the airbags fail to deploy, it is important to look into whether that occurred due to a vehicle safety defect.
In such cases injured victims can file a product liability claim against the automaker and/ore the manufacturer of the airbag. An experienced auto product liability lawyer can help injured victims and their families better understand their legal rights and options.
The best auto defect law firms will always offer a free consult and comprehensive case eval to injured victims and their families.