If there’s one part of your car you want to function perfectly, it’s probably the airbags. After all, they can save your life if another part messes up.
The New York Times, though, is reporting that the airbags manufactured by Japanese company Takata don’t not work, and that the company knew about the malfunctions for a decade and did not fix the problem.
Two former employees at the company told the newspaper that Takata had retrieved 50 airbags from scrapyards to perform tests on. Instead of reporting the results, though, executives had employees ignore and delete the findings, the paper said.
The alleged tests were performed in secret, after work hours, in Takata’s American headquarters in Auburn Hills, Mich., in the summer of 2004, the employees told the Times.
Takata’s shares are tanking following the newspaper’s report.
Takata first reported problems with the airbags in 2008, according to the Times.
Recalls have been made for 14 million cars worldwide because of problems with the airbags, and 4 deaths have been reported.