Hagens Berman Files Class-Action Lawsuit against Takata and Honda for Massive Airbag Recall

SEATTLE–(BUSINESS WIRE)–

Hagens Berman, a national class-action law firm, today filed suit against Japanese parts supplier Takata Corporation and automaker Honda Motor Co., relating to their recent rash of recalls due to faulty airbag inflators installed in millions of vehicles in the United States. Instead of safely deploying airbags to protect vehicle occupants, the defective Takata inflators, installed in millions of Honda vehicles, explode, sending metal and plastic shrapnel into the vehicle cabin, according to the complaint. The defective Takata inflators have already caused multiple injuries and fatalities.

Hagens Berman recently settled the $1.6 billion case against Toyota for its unintended acceleration defects and is currently litigating as lead counsel against General Motors for its faulty ignition switches.

The complaint, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, claims that Takata may have cut corners to build cheaper airbags, and that Honda may have bought its airbags from Takata to reduce manufacturing costs. The result, according to the complaint, is that instead of saving lives, defective Takata airbags in Honda automobiles are killing and maiming drivers and passengers involved in otherwise minor and survivable accidents.

“We’re talking about a critical vehicle safety component that makes the difference between life or death in an automobile accident,” said Steve Berman, managing partner at Hagens Berman. “Consumers deserve far more from Takata and Honda – two parties that have clearly let safety take a backseat to profits.”

The suit seeks to represent anyone in the United States who purchased or leased a Honda vehicle with a defective Takata airbag and that has been subject to an airbag-related warning or recall.

The suit accuses Takata of manufacturing cheap airbags that “blew up like hand-grenades, sending lethal metal and plastic shrapnel into the vehicle cockpit and into the bodies of the drivers and passengers.”

“Even more alarming, rather than take the issue head-on and immediately do everything in their power to prevent further injury and loss of life, Takata and Honda have engaged in a ten-year pattern of deception and obfuscation, only very recently beginning a partial recall of affected vehicles,” the suit states.

According to the complaint, Takata and Honda knew of the deadly airbag defect at least 13 years ago, but did nothing to prevent ongoing injury and loss of life. Honda and Takata unilaterally deemed that a 2004 reported airbag malfunction was “an anomaly,” and did not issue a recall, adequately investigate themselves or seek the involvement of federal safety regulators, the suit states.

“Instead of taking a vested interest in the safety of consumers, Honda and Takata chose to blatantly ignore this life-threatening safety defect,” Berman said. “They swept it under the rug while drivers and passengers were forced for years to live with this ongoing threat.”

Concerned consumers can visit the firm’s website for a list of affected Honda vehicles.

Hagens Berman’s Steve Berman was recently named co-lead counsel in the high-profile class-action lawsuit against General Motors, covering claims over faulty ignition switches and loss of vehicle value. The firm also secured a $1.6 billion settlement in litigation against Toyota Motor Corp. for owners of vehicles that were potentially prone to unintended acceleration.

More information about the investigation can be found at http://www.hbsslaw.com/cases-and-investigations/cases/takata.

About Hagens Berman

Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP is a consumer-rights class-action law firm with offices in nine cities. The firm has been named to the National Law Journal’s Plaintiffs’ Hot List seven times. More about the law firm and its successes can be found at www.hbsslaw.com. Follow the firm for updates and news at @ClassActionLaw.

Source Article from http://finance.yahoo.com/news/hagens-berman-files-class-action-004400689.html
Hagens Berman Files Class-Action Lawsuit against Takata and Honda for Massive Airbag Recall
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