Washington,D.C.-Jack Gillis, CFAâ€™s Automotive Expert and author of The Car Book (published with the center for Auto Safety), has some wise suggestions for consumers regarding this recent recall for the Takata automotive airbags.
Always available for comment, Gillis reports â€œThere is good news and bad news with the announcement of the Takata air bag recall: the good news, millions more Americans are covered for a fix to this serious problem, the bad news, it could take years to get safe parts manufactured and replaced in affected vehicles.â€
What Consumers Need to Do:
1. Obtain your vehicleâ€™s identification number (VIN) by looking in at your dash from the outside of the driverâ€™s side or on the outer edge of the driverâ€™s door. (It is also available on your registration card.)
2. Go to www.safercar.gov/vin and type in your VIN.
3. If your vehicle is part of the recall, contact ANY dealer of your vehicle immediately to schedule a replacement appointmentâ€”there is no charge for this fix.
4. Ask your dealer (or the manufacturer of your vehicle) for a â€˜loaner vehicleâ€™ while parts are being manufactured.
Important Note: If your vehicle is NOT currently listed as being involved in this recall, it is important to check back on a regular basis to see if it gets added.
The sooner you contact a dealer, says Gillis, the sooner youâ€™ll get on the list for repairs. â€œTraditional recall response rates are around 70 percent,” says Gillis, “so in the end, if consumers donâ€™t respond to this recall, there could potentially be over 10 million vehicles with this dangerous defect on the road.â€
â€œWhile the root cause of this problem is not fully understood, humid regions with high moisture in the air can exacerbate the problem. Consumers in those areas have likely already received a recall notice and should respond immediately,â€ added Gillis.
CFA is an association of more than 250 nonprofit consumer groups that was founded in 1968 to advance the consumer interest through research, advocacy and education.