Honda driver’s death in La. may be 7th from recalled Takata airbags

DETROIT (Bloomberg) — A Louisiana woman who got an airbag recall notice for her 2005 Honda Civic two days after the crash that killed her may be the seventh fatality linked to the defective Takata Corp. safety device.

The driver, Kylan Langlinais, 22, received the recall notice in the mail April 7, two days after the wreck and two days before she died, according to a complaint filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Lafayette, La.

The driver’s side airbag exploded with too much force and sprayed shrapnel into the passenger compartment after the car left the road and hit a utility pole at about 4 a.m. on April 5, according to the complaint.

The airbag system “violently exploded and sent metal shards, shrapnel and/or other foreign material into the passenger compartment,” according to the lawsuit.

Takata bowed to pressure from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and agreed May 19 to expand the recall to cover about 34 million airbag inflaters — a move that could become the largest product-safety recall action in U.S. history.

There have been six deaths, five in the U.S., linked to a defect that can cause the bags to deploy with too much force, sending metal shards into the passenger compartment. Previous recalls covered only about 17 million vehicles.

More than 50 million vehicles globally have been recalled because of Takata airbags since 2008, according to Reuters’ estimates.

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