Another driver has been killed by an exploding Takata airbag inflator, bringing the worldwide death toll to at least 24.
The latest death occurred three days after a crash on June 8, 2018, in the Phoenix suburb of Buckeye, Arizona, according to a statement released Friday by Honda, which made the car involved in the crash.
The driver, who was not identified, was hit by shrapnel from the airbag when a 2002 Honda Civic crashed at an intersection at 8:33 p.m., a Honda spokesman said. The death occurred at a hospital on June 11, according to the company.
More than 200 people also have been hurt by the inflators, which have caused the largest series of automotive recalls in U.S. history involving with as many as 70 million inflators to be recalled by the end of next year. About 100 million inflators are to be recalled worldwide by 19 auto and truck makers.
Takata used ammonium nitrate to create a small explosion to inflate the bags. But it can deteriorate due to high temperatures and humidity and explode too forcefully, spewing metal shrapnel. The deaths and recalls forced Takata into bankruptcy with its assets purchased by a company owned by a Chinese investment firm.
The owner of the Honda in the crash purchased the Civic used less than three months before the death. But there is no federal requirement that used car sellers have the cars repaired or inform buyers of any unrepaired recall problems. Honda said it did not know the car had been sold recently. There also is no requirement that an automaker be notified when a vehicle changes hands, Honda said in a statement.
The Civic in the crash has been under recall since December 2014 due to a faulty driver’s front airbag inflator. Honda said it mailed 12 recall notices over three years to the previous owners. The company also said it made more than 20 phone calls in an effort to reach the owners, but Honda records show the repairs were never done.
As for why a crash in June is coming to light now, the death wasn’t reported to the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration until March 11 of this year. The safety agency notified Honda on March 14, and it inspected the car with Honda on Friday and determined that the inflator was blown apart in the crash. “The rupture was confirmed at this inspection, and we announced the findings the same day,” Honda spokesman Chris Martin said.
These deaths have occurred since May 2009:
— May 27, 2009: Ashley Parham, 18, of Midwest City, Oklahoma, 2001 Honda Accord
— Dec. 24, 2009: Gurjit Rathore, 33, of Richmond, Virginia, 2001 Honda Accord
— Sept. 13, 2013: Hai Ming Xu, of Alhambra, California, 2002 Acura TL
— July 27, 2014: Law Suk Leh of Sibu, Malaysia, 2003 Honda City
— Sept. 7, 2014: Jewel Brangman, 26, of California, 2001 Honda Civic
— Sept. 29, 2014: Hien Thi Tran, 51, of Orlando, Florida, 2001 Honda Accord
— Jan. 18, 2015: Carlos Solis, 35, of Spring, Texas, 2002 Honda Accord
— April 15, 2015: Kylan Langlinais, 23, of Lafayette, Louisiana, 2005 Honda Accord
— July 22, 2015: Unidentified 13-year-old boy, Mercer County, Pennsylvania, 2001 Honda Accord
— Dec. 22, 2015: Joel Knight, 52, of Kershaw, South Carolina, 2006 Ford Ranger
— March 31, 2016: Huma Hanif, 17, of Fort Bend County, Texas, 2002 Honda Civic
— April 16, 2016: Unidentified person, Sabah State, Malaysia, 2006 Honda City. Inflator ruptured, no death cause determined.
— May 1, 2016: Unidentified person, Malaysia, 2003 Honda City. Inflator ruptured, no death cause determined.
— June, 2016: Unidentified person in Malaysia. Inflator ruptured, no death cause determined.
—June 19, 2016: Ramon Kuffo, 81, Hialeah, Florida. Inflator ruptured while he was repairing interior of car.
— Sept. 24, 2016: Unidentified driver, Johor State, Malaysia, 2009 Honda City. Inflator ruptured, no death cause determined.
— Sept. 30, 2016: Delia Robles, 50, of Corona, California, 2001 Honda Civic.
— July 1, 2017: Steve Mollohan, 56, of West Virginia, 2006 Ford Ranger.
— July 10, 2017: George R. Sharp, 61, of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, 2004 Honda Civic.
— July 13, 2017: Unidentified 58-year-old man in suburban Sydney, 2007 Honda CR-V.
— July 19, 2017: Nichol Lynn Barker, 34, of Holiday, Florida, 2002 Honda Accord.
— Jan. 1, 2018: Unidentified driver in central Selangor state, Malaysia, 2004 Honda City.
—May 27, 2018: Unidentified driver in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 2004 Honda City.
— June 11, 2018: Unidentified driver in Buckeye, Arizona, 2002 Honda Civic.
Sources: Associated Press archives, Center for Auto Safety, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Honda Motor Co., legal documents and police reports