After Japanese automaker Takata pleaded guilty for concealing deadly air bags that killed over ten people, four major car companies have also agreed to pay over $500 million to resolve claims related to exploding air bags in their vehicles. Toyota, Subaru, BMW, and Mazda will contribute the money to help fix the vehicles of people affected in the settlement. If the settlement is finalized later this year, the plaintiffs are going to receive $500 in compensation, a loaner car while the exploding air bags are removed from their cars, and related expenses will be covered under the settlement program. That comes on top of the reported $1 billion Takata has agreed to pay which will compensate automakers, victims and their families, and pay a criminal fine.
According to various news reports, the Takata air bags would explode with too much force sending lethal shrapnel to the drivers and passengers of the vehicle. Once the issue was discovered, there was a massive recall of the air bags which affected an estimated 42 million vehicles. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) published a list of cars that were effected by the Takata air bag scandal. Earlier this month, Senator Bill Nelson from Florida cited a report stating two-thirds of the vehicles with the defective airbags have not been fixed yet. He attributed the delay on fixing the effected vehicles on the lack of staff at the NHTSA due to President Donald Trump’s inability to fill positions at the agency. According to the Senator with summer arriving in a few weeks, it is imperative that the airbag issue gets resolved because more people drive in the summer months.