Late last month, 17-year old Huma Hanif was driving her 2002 Honda Civic near Richmond, Texas when she rear-ended a sport utility vehicle in what was described as a “minor” accident.
Hanif reportedly got out of the car – but then immediately collapsed.
Shrapnel from the car’s airbag had sliced an artery in her neck, killing her in seconds.
The airbag was one of some 24 million made by Japanese manufacturer Takata that have been recalled because they are defective. Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Deputy Danny Beckworth said that if the airbag which deployed during the crash had not been faulty:
“Everybody would have walked away.”
The sheriff of Fort Bend County, Troy Nehls, had this advice for anyone who is driving a vehicle affected by the recall:
“I wouldn’t drive it, I wouldn’t drive.”
Hanif’s death was the tenth in the U.S. linked to the faulty airbags, and over a hundred others have been injured. The airbag recall, the largest in the nation’s history, affects selected models of vehicles by these automakers:
- Daimler trucks/vans
- Ram trucks
The vehicles date as far back as the 2001 model year. The specific vehicle types can be found on this list from SaferCar.gov.
To find out whether your vehicle is among those on the recall list, look for its Vehicle Identification Number on your auto insurance card or the bottom of the vehicle’s windshield. Then go to safercar.gov and enter the VIN number:
The automakers have sent out the recall notices to owners of the vehicles. Unfortunately, a shortage of replacement parts is hindering the effort to repair the defective airbags.
And not everyone’s receiving a recall notice; Hanif’s family bought their car used and never saw one.
Huma, a high school senior, had reportedly wanted to become a nurse.
Source: Independent Journal Review