DANGER - READ NOW CAREFULLY!

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DANGER - READ NOW CAREFULLY!

Postby meteorite » Thu Oct 11, 2012 8:43 pm

Most likely, you will not be affected by this. But if you or any of your family, friends or associates should happen to end up buying a used car, or having a personal car repaired after an accident in which one or more airbags might have fired, be aware that this situation could exist.

The following is a news release from the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.


Safety Advisory: NHTSA Alerting Consumers to Dangers of Counterfeit Air Bags

NHTSA 42-12
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
Contact: Lynda Tran, 202-366-9550

Traffic safety agency urges vehicle owners and repair professionals to use only certified, original equipment replacement parts

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued a consumer safety advisory to alert vehicle owners and repair professionals to the dangers of counterfeit air bags. NHTSA has become aware of a problem involving the sale of counterfeit air bags for use as replacement parts in vehicles that have been involved in a crash. While these air bags look nearly identical to certified, original equipment parts—including bearing the insignia and branding of major automakers — NHTSA testing showed consistent malfunctioning ranging from non-deployment of the air bag to the expulsion of metal shrapnel during deployment. NHTSA is not aware of any deaths or injuries connected to counterfeit air bags.

While the full scope and scale of the problem of counterfeit air bags is uncertain from currently available data, NHTSA has identified certain vehicle makes and models for which these air bags may be available and believes this issue affects less than 0.1 percent of the U.S. vehicle fleet. Only vehicles which have had an air bag replaced within the past three years by a repair shop that is not part of a new car dealership may be at risk.

Consumers whose vehicles have been in a crash and had their air bags replaced by a repair shop that is not part of a new car dealership within the past three years or who have purchased a replacement air bag online should contact the call center that has been established by their auto manufacturer to have their vehicle inspected at their own expense and their air bag replaced if necessary. The full list of call centers and additional information are available at www.SaferCar.gov.

“Anytime equipment that is critical to protecting drivers and passengers fails to operate properly, it is a serious safety concern,” said Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. “We want consumers to be immediately aware of this problem and to review our safety information to see if their vehicle could be in need of inspection.”

“We expect all motor vehicle equipment to meet federal safety standards — and air bags in particular play a central role in keeping drivers and passengers safe in the event of a crash,” said NHTSA Administrator David Strickland. “That’s why it’s critical that vehicle owners work with their automotive dealers and repair professionals to ensure they use the appropriate, original equipment parts in the event they need to replace their air bag.”

NHTSA has been working with a number of government agencies — including U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the U.S. Department of Justice—to better understand the issue of counterfeit air bags and how to prevent them from being purchased and installed in vehicles.

“Organized criminals are selling dangerous counterfeit and substandard airbags to consumers and suppliers with little to no regard to hazardous health and safety consequences,” said ICE Director John Morton. “We will continue to aggressively investigate criminal supply chains with our law enforcement and private industry partners and bring these criminals to justice.”

NHTSA is currently gathering information from automakers about their systems for verifying the authenticity of replacement parts and is working with the industry to make the driving public aware of the potential safety risk posed by counterfeit air bags. Moving forward, the agency will continue to monitor consumer complaints, police accident reports, and other sources for additional information.

CONSUMERS THAT SHOULD NOT BE AT RISK:

Consumers who purchased their vehicle new and have not had their air bags replaced
Consumers who have full knowledge of the entire history of their used vehicle (including knowing whether the vehicle had been in a crash in the last three years and being certain that the air bag was replaced at a new car dealership)

CONSUMERS THAT MAY BE AT RISK AND SHOULD CONTACT THE CALL CENTER ESTABLISHED BY THEIR AUTO MANUFACTURER:

Consumers who have had air bags replaced within the past three years at a repair shop that is not part of a new car dealership
Consumers who have purchased a used car that may have sustained an air bag deployment before their purchase
Consumers who own a car with a title branded salvage, rebuilt, or reconstructed
Consumers who have purchased replacement air bags from eBay or other non-certified sources—especially if they were purchased at unusually low prices (i.e. less than $400)

VEHICLES FOR WHICH COUNTERFEIT AIR BAGS MAY BE AVAILABLE:

As of today, NHTSA is aware of counterfeit air bags available for the following vehicle makes and models:

Make


Model Year(s)


Model(s)

Acura


2009-2011


TSX

Audi


2006-2009


A3, A4, A6, A8, Q5, Q7

BMW


2007-2011


X5, E70, E60, E61

2008-2010


5-series, 528i, 535i

2004-2007


5-Series, 525i, 530, 535, E60, E61

2007-2011


E90, E91

Not listed


E92, E93

2007-2011


X5, E70

2004-2007


525i, 530, 535

2011-2012


X3

Buick


2010-2011


Lacrosse

Chevrolet


2011-2012


Cruze

2006-2010


Aveo

2011-2012


Volt

2012


Camaro

Ford


2012


Focus

2005-2009


Mustang

Honda


2003-2012


Accord

2006-2011


Civic

2002-2011


CRV

2007-2011


Fit

2009-2011


Pilot

2009-2011


Insight

2009-2011


Crosstour

2011


Odyssey

Hyundai


2007-2011


Elantra

Not listed


Genesis

Not listed


Sonata

Infiniti


2007-2011


G35, EX35

Kia


2010-2011


Soul/Forte

2004-2009


Spectra

Land Rover


2012


Range Rover Evoque

Lexus


2006-2011


IS250, IS350, IS-F

2003-2008


GX470

2007-2009


RX350

Not listed


ES350

Mazda


2004


Mazda 3

2010-2012


Mazda 3

Mercedes


2009-2011


C, GLK

2010-2011


E350, E550

2007-2008


S550

2006-2009


ML

2009-2010


GL, ML

Mitsubishi


Not listed


Outlander

Nissan


1992-2002


Quest

2010-2011


Quest

2009-2011


Cube

2007-2011


Versa

2009-2010


Murano

Not listed


Altima

Subaru


2008-2009


Forester




2008-2009


Imprezza




2008-2009


Outback




2010-2011


Legacy

Suzuki


2007-2010


SX4

Toyota


2002-2006


Camry

2012


Camry

2009-2011


Corolla, Matrix

2007-2011


Yaris

2004-2011


Highlander

2004-2011


Sienna

2004-2011


Tacoma

2010-2012


Prius

2003-2006


Tundra

2007-2011


Tundra

2003-2006


Sequoia

2003-2010


Land Cruiser

2004-2007


Highlander

2008-2010


Highlander

2004-2009


4Runner

2007-2009


Solara

2005-2011


RAV4

Volkswagen


2006-2010


Jetta

Volvo


Not listed


XC60, XC70

Not listed


V70, S60, S80

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Also visit the NHTSA website. Currently on the entry page there is a video dealing with this issue. You will find it very scary. It's not the possibility that the counterfeit airbag won't fire effectively that is most worrying - it's the face full of metal shrapnel and/or fireworks (clearly seen in the movie) that you do not want to meet.
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