Much has been said about the airbag issues that have affected a number of major automakers, including Honda, Nissan, Toyota and Mercedes-Benz. Essentially, Japanese airbag maker Tanaka has been blamed for producing (and not correcting) countless numbers of airbags that could be hazardous. A number of unsuspecting drivers have been injured (and killed) from shrapnel like pieces of metal coming from airbag casings when the airbag inflates.
Yet another automaker has come forward to announce a recall due to airbag problems. BMW, which produces the Mini Cooper brand, has announced that it will be recalling more than 90,000 vehicles in the United States because of a faulty sensor that could prevent driver’s side airbags from inflating in the event of a crash.
According to a CNN.com report, the affected vehicles include the Mini Cooper and Cooper S vehicles built between January 2005 and November 2006 as well as Mini convertibles built between 2005 and 2008.
The recall is not just a publicity opportunity. In fact, automakers have a legal duty to take reasonable steps to correct defects that could put unsuspecting consumers at risk. If an automaker fails to do so, and a consumer is injured, the automaker could be held liable.
It is reported that the recall will begin in May. In the meantime, BMW estimates that about 10 percent of Mini Coopers on the road today have the defective sensor. The company also announced that owners could bring their vehicles in to have the repairs completed for free.