Monday, August 1, 2016

For years, Takata reported misleading airbag safety information to NHTSA.
The story was covered on local television by WJLA-TV Washington (7/30, 11:42 p.m. EST, 35K). are not 25. in northeast washington, mike carter-conneen, abc 7 news. kimberly: now a 7 on your side special report – it is the largest recall in american history, 70 million airbags that could malfunction sending deadly 11:39 PMshrapnel into drivers and passengers. two years into the recall, 7 on your side senior investigative reporter lisa fletcher uncover new information from takata employees to the highest level of congress. lisa: do you foresee a recall of the replacement airbags? >> will be a recall of the replacement airbags as sure as there are cars in america. lisa: one of every five cars in the u.s. as a takata airbag, and they are the most popular brands. currently about 70 million are under recall. replacements are being made as fast as possible. according to nhtsa, which oversees the recall, more than 9 million have been installed. but there is a problem. the very same company that designed the faulty airbag 11:40 PMsystem, takata, is designing and manufacturing its replacement coming using the same key ingredients experts say calls to the original airbags to fail. they predict they will eventually cause replacements to fail. >> someone will be killed if we go forward with this. i cannot put it more plainly than that. lisa: he is takata’s former chief engineer, who supervised the testing at the manufacturing facility. he said in 1999, against his advice, takata switched to win an expensive and a tory asleep on suitable chemical called ammonium nitrate to deploy its airbags. >> it’s not an appropriate choice for a safety device. lisa: if exposed to humidity and temperature swings, a become so volatile and cannot be contained by the metal housing used in the airbag system. is it an overstatement to say that it turns into a bomb? 11:41 PM>> it turns it into white light with shrapnel pointed at your head bashed it turns it into a pipe bomb with shrapnel pointed at your head. >> i’m fortunate to be sitting here talking to you now. lisa: his takata airbag catastrophically failed, sending a three inch piece of metal into his skull. >> i could be six feet under. lisa: 10 people have been killed, at least. takata refused multiple request for an interview. they claim they stabilized the chemical and by adding a drying agent called a desiccant to the inflator to absorb excess humidity. >> the desiccant only slows the progress. it does not eliminate the problem. the desiccant does nothing to overcome the thermal cycling problem. lisa: the millions of new airbags being installed to 11:42 PMsatisfy the recall contained the desiccant as the fix. basically this is an unfixable problem. >> correct. >> to continue use of ammonium nitrate to repair or replace these airbags is equally or even more reprehensible and irresponsible, maybe even criminal. lisa: are you going to ask the doj to open a criminal investigation? >> we will. lisa: senator richard blumenthal has pressured nhtsa and takata for answers. >> they have been asleep, literally, at the wheel. they need to demonstrate much more aggressive, per active consumer protection. lisa: anthony foxxpublicly knowledged takata misled the government, but nhtsa continues to allow the company to use a ammonium nitrate. >> a provided incomplete, inaccurate, and misleading information to nhtsa. to the companies using its inflator’s and the public. lisa: nhtsa says you are still safer with an airbag than without, but they could force them to recall all of ammonium nitrate inflators. >> these cars will have to be recalled again. . we are talking about a recall of the recall. absolutely. mind-boggling.

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