“Folks should not drive these vehicles unless they are going straight to a dealer to have them repaired immediately, free of charge.”
— U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx
A celebrity death and grave new warnings about the Takata airbag recall are making news and renewing conversations about the importance of heeding auto recalls.
Last month, “Star Trek” actor Anton Yelchin was killed when his recalled 2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee rolled backward pinning him against a brick wall. The SUV’s specific recall defect can cause the vehicle to roll away after a driver exits.
Last week, the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued an urgent warning to more than 300,000 Honda and Acura owners to immediately stop driving their cars until their Takata airbags are replaced. Some 2001-2003 models have shown rupture rates as high as 50 percent when tested. “The risk posed by the airbag inflators in these vehicles is grave, and it is critical they be repaired now to avoid more deaths and serious injuries,” the NHTSA cautioned.
Added U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, “Folks should not drive these vehicles unless they are going straight to a dealer to have them repaired immediately, free of charge.”
There is a one in five chance that your car could have a safety recall, according to Carfax, which estimates more than 47 million vehicles in the U.S. have at least one unfixed recall issue. “Many people still are unnecessarily risking their lives by not staying informed or taking action when their vehicle is under a recall,” said Carfax spokesperson Larry Gamache.
To-date, 10 deaths have been linked to Takata’s faulty airbag inflators including a 17-year-old girl from Texas in April. In Yelchin’s case, his SUV was one of 1.1 million vehicles recalled by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV in April 2016 over the potential to roll away. Forty-one injuries have been linked to the Takata airbag recall, according to Reuters.
For car owners, knowing if your vehicle has a service recall is the important first step to staying safe on the road. The NHTSA has new search tool that uses Vehicle Identification Numbers (VIN) to identify if a specific vehicle has not been repaired as part of a safety recall in the last 15 years.
At AutoPayPlus, our customer commitment takes recall safety one step further with a free service powered by Edmunds that promptly emails service recalls to our customers and then archives them in the customer’s website account for easy reference.