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Takata Airbag Recall May Expand

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Sept. 29, 2015—The U.S. regulator overseeing the replacement of Takata Corp. airbags may expand the recall, according to a report by Bloomberg. Seven manufacturers have been contacted by the National Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA) and added vehicles may include Volkswagen AG and Tesla Motors Inc.

Takata identified the seven as companies that were supplied with its airbag inflators that use ammonium nitrate propellant, according to letters from the NHTSA dated Sept. 22. Takata said that the chemical propellant appears to be one of the factors contributing to airbag ruptures linked to at least eight deaths and 130 injuries.

Takata told NHTSA in July that it continued to supply airbags with ammonium nitrate to Volkswagen and Tesla. The agency contacted those manufacturers along with Mercedes-Benz, Jaguar Land Rover, Suzuki Motor Corp., Volvo Trucks and Spartan Motors Inc., to see whether they’re considering service actions and what challenges they would face if a wider scope of recalls is ordered.

NHTSA has confirmed Takata’s main findings related to the cause behind the airbag failures may be related to age, prolonged exposure to humidity and moisture, according to an NHTSA official.  

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