Ticking time bomb: Have you been too lazy to fix yours?

A deployed airbag is seen in a 2001 Honda Accord.
A deployed airbag is seen in a 2001 Honda Accord.

SLACK motorists could be driving ticking time bombs.

About 43,000 cars are still on the road containing the most dangerous types of faulty Takata airbags.

Components in the airbags have deteriorated over time and could spray shrapnel into the cabin when the airbag is triggered in an accident.

Faulty airbags caused one death in Sydney during July (as well as seriously injuring a driver in Darwin), along with serious injury and 18 fatalities overseas.

While thousands of airbags have been replaced, some owners have failed to act on warnings. Many have told dealers they don't have time for the work to be undertaken, or are just too lazy to take their vehicle back to the manufacturer.

The work is carried out free by dealerships.


A Takata air-bag inflater. Some inflaters have been prone to explosions.
A Takata air-bag inflater. Some inflaters have been prone to explosions.

According to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, the higher risk "alpha airbags" were installed in some models of Honda, Toyota, Nissan, BMW, Mazda and Lexus cars, sold in Australia sold in Australia from about 2001-2004.

"We urge drivers of vehicles with alpha airbags installed to immediately book in to have their airbags replaced before driving anywhere over the Christmas holiday period. There is a significant and much higher risk of injury or death involved in driving vehicles fitted with these alpha airbags," ACCC deputy chairwoman Delia Rickard said.

"As we approach the festive season, many of us are driving longer distances, so it is vital to act now to avoid a tragedy. If you have a car that contains an 'alpha' airbag, our advice is to not to drive it until the airbag has been replaced."


The ACCC is now investigating the Takata airbag recall.
The ACCC is now investigating the Takata airbag recall.

Alfa airbags

BMW 3 Series E46 year range from 12/2001-03/2003

BMW 3 Series E46 09/1999-8/2006

Honda Accord, CR-V 2001-2002

Honda Civic 2001

Honda Accord 2001-2002

Honda Civic, Accord, Accord Euro, CR-V, Jazz, MDX 2001-2003

Honda Jazz 2004

Mazda6, RX-8, BT-50 2002-2011

Nissan N16 Pulsar, Y61 Patrol, D22 Navara, T30 X-Trail 2000-2004

Nissan N16 Pulsar, D22 Navara, Y61 Patrol, T30 X-Trail, A33 Maxima 2001-2003

Toyota Corolla, Avensis Verso, Lexus SC430 2000-2004

Toyota Echo, Rav 4 2002-2003

During October, Honda pleaded with remaining owners to have their vehicles repaired.

Honda Australia director Stephen Collins said any Honda customers who were still unsure about the status of their vehicle should check the Honda recall website, and also ensure the company has their latest contact details.

The manufacturer issued an even more graphic recall letter with the headline "Choosing Not to Act Could Be Deadly".


Topics:  airbag replacement bmw car advice cars news editors picks honda lexus mazda motoring motoring advice nissan toyota

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