Malaysia to penalize owners who don't replace Takata airbags

A recalled Takata airbag inflator is shown in Miami Florida in this

The latest incident took place on Wednesday in a 2004 Honda City vehicle in Malaysia's capital Kuala Lumpur, Honda said.

In this November 20, 2016, photo, a Honda technician works on an airbag during a free airbag replacement event in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Honda said the ill-fated 2004 City vehicle in Malaysia had been recalled in 2015, but repairs were never made. A almost inch-long piece of shrapnel was found lodged in the victim's neck, the Associated Press reported.

Transport Minister Anthony Loke stated Saturday that house owners of 71,315 Honda automobiles have nonetheless not responded to the recall alternative and will probably be barred from renewing their street tax if they do not achieve this.

"The 71,315 cars are like a time bomb that can kill anytime. the government has to take such (a) drastic measure because human lives are more important than a little inconvenience", Loke said after visiting the victim's family at their home.

"It is proven that over the last four years, the awareness campaign is not enough, the awareness campaign has not been effective", Loke said.

"This measure is crucial as 21.5% of 332,458 Honda cars, manufactured between 2003 and 2013, are still using the old Takata airbags".

Honda also has reported three other fatal crashes in vehicles equipped with Takata airbag inflators that ruptured, including the new one in Malaysia.

"As at May 29, 2018, Honda Malaysia has completed more than 224,000 units of Takata driver front airbag inflator which translates to 85% completion ratio".

Of the confirmed Honda deaths, 13 have been in the United States and five in Malaysia.

The defective air bags have faulty inflators and propellant devices that may deploy improperly in an accident, shooting out metal fragments that can kill or injure.

Last month in the USA, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said it would hold meetings with 12 major automakers that failed to fulfil a December 2017 target deadline for completing repairs on the highest-priority vehicles with unsafe Takata air bag inflators.

The automaker's local unit has previously noted six fatal accidents in Malaysia that it suspects could have been caused by faulty airbags made by Tokyo-based Takata, which was forced to file for bankruptcy protection a year ago.

With immediate effect, a total of 71,315 Honda and other brand auto owners who fail to get their airbags changed, despite reminders, will not have their road tax renewed, said Transport Minister Anthony Loke Siew Fook.



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