Feds Say GM Vehicles Might Have Exploding Air Bags Too

Sep 29, 2014 02:30 PM EDT | Jordan Ecarma

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General Motors could be getting even more bad news in the near future.

Takata's exploding air bag fiasco could have affected GM vehicles along with cars manufactured by Honda, Fiat Chrysler and Toyota, Reuters reported. Regional recalls that started in June have included more than 4.3 million vehicles equipped with problematic air bags that can rupture and fire metal fragments at the car's occupants.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration first probed the issue after explosions were reported in Florida and Puerto Rico, and the safety recall could be expanded to include GM vehicles, federal regulators said in documents filed this week.

Altogether, Takata has recalled 16 million vehicles worldwide for the air bag issue, which reportedly stemmed from improperly stored propellant that was exposed to moisture.

The second-largest maker of auto safety products in the world, Takata has been asked by automakers to manufacture around 1.47 million inflator kits in the next six months.

Other carmakers affected by the air bag recalls include BMW, Ford, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan and Subaru.

GM declined to comment to Reuters, while NHTSA officials said they do not comment on ongoing investigations.  

Last April, the NHTSA described the air bag issue by saying that "the inflator could rupture with metal fragments striking and potentially seriously injuring the passenger seat occupant or other occupants," according to The Wall Street Journal.

Honda apparently knew that the air bags were faulty around a decade ago, said a recent New York Times report.

Two deaths and more than 30 injuries have occurred in Honda vehicles with exploding air bags, while regulators report that the problematic parts have been related to at least 139 injuries in vehicles from various carmakers. 

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