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5 Of The Worst Auto Defects And Recalls Of All Time

Automobile defects are more common than people think. Earlier this year, Subaru, Tesla, BMW, and Volkswagen were among several auto manufacturers who issued a recall to replace potentially deadly airbag inflators made by Japanese company Takata Corp. This is just the latest round of the airbag recalls that began with Honda in 2001.

The defect in this particular case can cause the inflators to fling bits of shrapnel into drivers and passengers when the airbag is activated. There have been 23 deaths and hundreds of injuries worldwide from this defect, and as many as 70 million vehicles will be recalled by the time it ends in late 2020.

5 Of The Worst Defects

The numbers are high in both deaths and recalled vehicles, but this is hardly the most terrible event that has happened in the history of auto recalls. Here are 5 of the worst auto defects, ranked from bad to worse.

Too Fast Toyotas. In 2009, Toyota had to recall 8 million cars for a faulty acceleration issue. The cars would accelerate suddenly, leaving drivers no way to stop or slow down. Toyota blamed this on a number of reasons, from “sticky” gas pedals to ill-fitting floor mats. After 3 recalls affecting 9.3 million cars, the death toll topped out at 89.

Firestone Tires. Dangerous and unexplained tread separation caused sudden blowouts on vehicles with these tires. This led to 271 deaths and over 700 injuries that began in the early 1990’s before Firestone finally recalled 14.4 million tires in 2000.

The Ford Pinto. Due to poor positioning, the gas tanks of the Ford Pinto and Mercury Bobcat sedan were prone to rupture in a rear end collision. This applies to years 1971 – 1978. Before the vehicles were recalled in 1978, 180 people were killed in explosion accidents.

GM’s Faulty Ignitions. From 2003 to 2011, GM installed faulty ignition switches in millions of their vehicles. At speeds of 60 mph and over, this defect caused the cars to suddenly cut off, disabling the brakes, power steering, and airbags. The only way to stop was to crash into something. 303 people died, and many more suffered life-threatening injuries.

The Ford Bronco. Ford discovered a dangerous defect in this SUV when it was just a prototype. At speeds as low as 20 mph, the Bronco could tip onto two wheels. The fix was deemed “too expensive” and the vehicle was released to the public. From 1984 – 1996, there were 17,721 people involved in these rollover crashes, and 823 deaths.

What To Do If Your Car Is Recalled

If your vehicle has been recalled for any reason, you will receive a notice in the mail letting you know how to proceed. These letters can take time to arrive, however, so keep an eye on any recall alerts in the news. If your vehicle is on a recall list, you will be advised to take it to a reputable dealer for repair. You are not required to pay for the repair. Having it repaired as soon as possible is the best way to protect you and your family from harm.

Too many recalls have been issued in recent years after causing injuries and death to many unfortunate drivers. This has kept many injury attorneys busy. If you have been injured in an automobile accident due to a manufactures safety issues, speak to a qualified attorney. You may be able to receive fair compensation for your losses.