Takata knew about its airbag problems over a decade ago
With millions of vehicles in need of repair and over 100 reported injuries, Takata is in deep, and it looks like things are about to get a lot worse for the Japanese automotive component maker. Two anonymous sources, both of whom used to be employees at the company, have claimed to The New York Times that Takata allegedly knew about the potential dangers of its defective airbag components dude to secret tests back in 2004.
“The steel inflaters in two of the airbags cracked during the tests, a condition that can lead to rupture,” the former employees said. “The result was so startling that engineers began designing possible fixes in preparation for a recall, the former employees said. But instead of alerting federal safety regulators to the possible danger, Takata executives discounted the results and ordered the lab technicians to delete the testing data from their computers and dispose of the airbag inflaters.”
Furthermore, other anonymous sources within Takata claim that the problems could go even deeper than that. The company allegedly had some major quality control issues. In one case, a forklift allegedly dropped a container of airbag components, but were still shipped without being properly inspected first. In another example, trucks were allegedly leaking water onto the components during transit. According to workers, the company ignored these problems in order to keep up with the demand for airbags from Takata’s numerous automotive partners.