Takata air bag inflator ruptures during vehicle fix, kills man

A visitor and the logo of Honda Motor Co are reflected on a Honda car at the company's headquarters in Tokyo

Of the deaths linked to Takata's inflators, 16 took place in Honda vehicles since May 2009, including five in Malaysia using a different type of Takata inflator, while one death occurred in a Ford Motor Co vehicle in SC in December 2015.

Honda also is quoted as saying it was "difficult to determine whether the cause of death in this incident was the inflator rupture, or an interaction of the hammer with the deploying air bag".

Last month, Takata filed for bankruptcy protection in the USA and Japan following call backs for over 100 million faulty airbags, with global liabilities expected to reach up to $US10 billion ($A13.2 billion).

According to police, Kuffo was in the back yard of his home near Miami, working on a silver 2001 Honda Accord, when a neighbor heard a loud bang.

Takata uses the chemical ammonium nitrate to inflate air bags.

"It is hard to determine whether the cause of death in this incident was the inflator rupture, or an interaction of the hammer with the deploying airbag", Honda said. US supplier Key Safety Systems is set to purchase almost all of the company's global assets for $1.59 billion, which is still far short of what the company will ultimately face when all is said and done.

According to a Honda spokesperson, a deceleration sensor that activates the airbags is mounted on the wall between the engine and the passenger compartment.

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"For years now, Takata has told the public that their line of air bag inflators with moisture absorbent was safe". The owner had received 12 recall notices.

The Honda Accord was among a group of more than 300,000 unrepaired recalled Honda vehicles equipped with inflators with a substantial risk of rupturing.

Takata Corp.is expanding its recall to include another 2.7 million air bag inflators in the United States that may be prone to rupturing, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced Tuesday. Honda said the vehicle was parked but the ignition switch was on, with the airbags activated. Laboratory tests show they have as high as a 50 percent chance of blowing apart in a crash. Those models are the 2001 and 2002 Accord and Civic, the 2002 CR-V and Odyssey, the 2002 and 2003 Acura 3.2 TL, the 2003 Acura 3.2 CL and the 2003 Pilot.

Nissan said the new recall affects just over 515,000 Versa subcompact hatchback and sedans from the 2007 through 2012 model years.

Honda says the person was working on the Honda using a hammer, and that the key was in the "on" position. It costs about $10 per day, Martin said.

Multiple owners of the auto were mailed 12 recall notices over seven years. "Our records indicate that the recall fix was never completed on this vehicle", Honda said in a statement.

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