Truck Carrying Takata Air Bags Explodes in Texas, Killing 1 and Injuring 4

August 29, 2016, 8:23 AM UTC
Massive Airbag Recall Prompts Safety Concerns
MEDLEY, FL - MAY 22: A deployed airbag is seen in a 2001 Honda Accord at the LKQ Pick Your Part salvage yard on May 22, 2015 in Medley, Florida. The largest automotive recall in history centers around the defective Takata Corp. air bags that are found in millions of vehicles that are manufactured by BMW, Chrysler, Daimler Trucks, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Subaru and Toyota. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Joe Raedle/ Getty Images/ File

A truck transporting Takata air bag inflators and propellants that are at the center of a global recall exploded in Texas earlier this month, resulting in one death and four injuries, the embattled auto parts supplier said on Monday.

The truck operated by a subcontractor was traveling to a Takata plant in Eagle Pass, Texas, on Aug. 22 when the accident occurred, causing an explosion which incinerated one home, local media reported.

A Takata spokesman in Tokyo was unable to confirm the date and location of the accident, but said the truck was carrying air bag inflators and propellants containing ammonium nitrate, the volatile chemical compound linked to the supplier’s exploding air bags, and that the blast killed one woman.

“Takata immediately deployed personnel to the site and has been working closely with the subcontractor and the appropriate authorities to investigate this incident,” the company said in a statement.

See also: Takata Says the Final Results of Its Air Bag Probe May Take Longer Than Expected

The spokesman said Takata has a warehouse in Eagle Pass which stocks inflators manufactured across the U.S.-Mexico border at its plant in Monclova, which has been confirmed as one of the sources of its defective air bags.

These air bags have been linked to the deaths of at least 14 people and have sparked the global auto industry’s biggest-ever recall. Prolonged exposure of the inflators to hot conditions can cause air bags to explode with excessive force, spraying shrapnel into passenger compartments.

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More than 100 million vehicles worldwide have been slated for recall to replace Takata inflators, which in addition to the deaths, are linked to more than 150 injuries – mostly in the United States and involving Honda Motor Co Ltd cars.

Takata is looking for a financial sponsor to help overhaul its business and carry ballooning costs as it faces potentially billions of dollars worth of liabilities over the sometimes deadly defects in its inflators.