The death of Carlos Solis IV on Jan. 18 has brought to light the shortcomings of the Takata airbag recalls announced last year. Specifically, deficiencies have been noted in how recalls are dealt with for used vehicles.
Solis purchased a silver Honda Accord at a Texas used-car lot in April 2014. The vehicle had two previous owners, two accidents listed and a defective airbag that had been recalled in 2011. Unfortunately, according to the owner of the used-car lot, they were not aware that the car had been recalled.
Solis was involved in a relatively minor collision on Jan. 18. The front airbag in the Accord deployed and the inflator exploded, sending bits of shrapnel into Soliss neck. Solis died at the scene.
According to Sam Atia, owner of All Stars Auto Sales in Cypress, Texas, he gave Solis the cars vehicle identification number so he could check the vehicle history. Car dealers are not required by law to get recall repairs completed before selling a used vehicle. This means that cars can be legally bought and sold, titled, re-titled, and can pass safety inspections even with outstanding recalls.
It has been estimated that 46 million cars with outstanding recalls were on the road in late 2014.
A spokesman for Honda said that previous owners were notified that the Honda Accord was recalled, but one had not yet been sent to Solis.
Some government officials are pushing for reform that would hold dealers more accountable for outstanding recalls. The Transportation Department has proposed legislation that would require rental-car companies and used-car dealers to perform recall repairs. Additionally, Honda has suggested that owners be denied new registration for vehicles with unfixed recalls.
The Takata airbag recall lawyers at O’Connor Acciani & Levy are dedicated to protecting the rights of injury victims and believe that negligent companies such as Takata Corp. need to be held accountable for their actions. If you have been injured or someone you love has been wrongfully killed as a result of a defective Takata airbag, a personal injury attorney from our firm can help you get the justice you deserve.