Toyota Recalls 645,000 Vehicles for Airbags That May Not Inflate
Toyota is recalling about 645,000 vehicles globally to repair an electrical problem that could prevent airbags from inflating during a car accident. According to an Associated Press news report, about 49,000 of these recalled vehicles are in the United States covering the 2016 model-year Prius, Lexus RX vehicles and the 2015 and 2016 Lexus NX models.
Details of the Recall
The recall covers certain Toyota Prius and Lexus RX and NX SUVs as well. Also covered under this recent recall are some Toyota Alphard, Vellfire, Sienta, Noah, Probox, Voxy, Succeed, Esquire, Corolla, Highlander, Levin and Hilux models. All of the recalled vehicles were manufactured from May 2015 to March 2016. The automaker has said that an open electrical circuit could occur over time setting off an airbag warning light.
This could essentially prevent the side and front airbags from deploying. When the recall begins, dealers will inspect serial numbers on sensors and replace them if necessary at no cost to consumers. The automaker will begin to send out notifications via mail to owners beginning in late March.
Dangers Posed by Airbag Defects
There are several different types of airbag defects. We’ve seen faulty airbags that fail to inflate, as in this case, or deploy. There are airbags that inflate inadvertently causing injuries or even crashes. And we’ve seen tens of millions of Takata airbags recalled for exploding with so much force that they hurl shrapnel into the vehicle compartment severely injuring or even killing occupants.
All of these airbag defects have the potential to cause catastrophic injuries or even deaths. While automakers have the responsibility to manufacture vehicles that are safe for drivers and their families, they also have the obligation to issue a recall when a safety defect is discovered. Under the law, they are required to perform the repairs at no cost to consumers.
What Can You Do?
You can check if your vehicle has been recalled by visiting the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) website at safercar.gov. You can then enter your vehicle identification number or VIN to check if your vehicle has been recalled. If it is part of a recall, contact your dealership to schedule an inspection and a repair, if that becomes necessary.
The one thing consumers should never do is ignore a recall. If you are in the market for a used car, it is important that you insist the recall repairs are performed before you purchase the vehicle. If you have been injured due to a recalled vehicle, contact an experienced auto defect lawyer who will fight for your rights and help you recover maximum compensation for your losses.