Road Safety: Motorists urged to check for open recalls before holiday trips

*Automotive data research firm CARFAX says vehicles with 16 million recalled airbags are still on the road

*Company recommends where to check if your car has an open recall by the manufacturer

Alexander Davis | ConsumerConnect

Although healthcare experts have advised consumers to avoid travels in the country during over the Thanksgiving holiday, a recent survey from Cars.com indicated that almost half the United States (US) would travel mostly by car by the end of year 2020.

CARFAX, an automotive data research company, has disclosed that travellers everywhere can be exposed to more danger than the Coronavirus (COVID-19), especially if they travel in cars with open, unrepaired recalls for dangerous airbags.

Vehicle Airbags Deployed   Photo: Wikimedia

There could be about 16 million airbags in vehicles on the road today with an open safety recall, according to the survey.

The company stated that more than 11 million of those are Takata airbags, which is said to be the subject of the largest recall action in US history.

The study finding revealed that “Takata airbags are especially dangerous” since they have been shown to sometimes explode, sending tiny bits of metal throughout the vehicle’s cabin.

Besides the airbags, CARFAX said its review of available data showed that there may be vehicles with another 5 million airbags from other suppliers that need to be replaced under recall orders.

The automotive data firm said it is issuing the reminder because it expects a sharp increase of vehicles on the road over the next few weeks.

Faisal Hasan, General Manager of Data at CARFAX, said: “Unfortunately, the recent deaths related to defective airbags underscore the critical importance of closing any open recalls.

“As we approach the Thanksgiving holiday, we know people may be taking road trips to visit family and loved ones.

“We strongly encourage all car owners to check for open recalls. It’s free to check and free to get repairs, and it’s a vital step in making our roads safer for everyone.”

Here’s where to check if your car has an open recall

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) maintains an online database where you can check to see if your vehicle is subject to an open recall.

You just need to know your vehicle information number (VIN), listed on your vehicle registration and embossed into the dashboard on the driver’s side of the vehicle.

It was further learnt that a total of 18 people had been killed in the US, and more than 250 injured from the explosion of defective Takata airbag inflators.

Problems with how those airbags work have led to 63 million inflators being recalled.

Data from CARFAX also indicated the number of vehicles with open safety recalls is on the rise after two straight years of declines.

The firm stated that there are well over 55.7 million recalled vehicles on the road worldwide that have not been repaired today, up 5 percent from 2019.

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