The recent reports revealed that the Department of Transportation is launching a review of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration because of the poor manner with which the agency handled an automotive recall in the recent times. The NHTSA was held responsible for the recalling of millions of vehicles with the defective airbags. These airbags were installed by Takata, a Japanese auto supplier and are evidently defenseless to moisture which causes them to explode. The reported accidents with these faulty airbags led to at least 3 deaths and more than 100 injuries.
However, the DOT is not feeling satisfied with the way NHTSA has gotten the word out regarding safety advisories, not only in this automotive recall but in the previous recalls too, ABC News reported. Certainly, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration was aware of the Takata airbag issue for ages. The recall notices have been sent out repeatedly for the past 2 years, and the NHTSA has been investigating Takata since June.
In spite of the NHTSA’s long knowledge about the airbag defect, deaths due to this issue have continued. In Florida, a woman was killed strangely earlier this month in a case that investigators firstly looked at as a murder. Since then, some theories emerged that the woman’s death might have been caused by an exploding airbag and she was the 4th victim of the Takata’s defect.
Certainly, the Department of Transportation will investigate the NHTSA’s issues, including delayed response and the lack of proper advisory notices. Additionally, DOT will also take a look at an incident happened this week where the NHTSA published incorrect information about the recall.
It has been reported that the agency posted a recall notice on its website this Monday listing various makes and models and influenced owners to get their vehicles checked for defective airbags. However, the notice falsely mentioned that 4.7 million auto owners could be affected by the issue. And later on, a new notice published on the website stating that 7.8 million owners affected. It seems that the NHTSA’s Monday notice listed the wrong figures.
Lastly, The final notice from NHTSA urged only auto owners living in humid parts of the country to seek airbag checks or replacements. Some legislators want a more extensive recall, since humidity does exist in all parts of the country, and since any auto owners from more mild areas could still travel to humid hotspots like Florida.