VOLVO Recalls Older Vehicles With Faulty Air Bags

DETROIT — The front driver’s air bag can burst and hurl shrapnel into the cabin, prompting VOLVO recalls almost 260,000 older cars in the United States.

The recall follows one issued in November 2020 in response to the death of an unnamed American driver.

S80 sedans from 2001 to 2006 and S60 sedans from 2001 to 2009 are included in the current recall.

The issue is comparable to the numerous problems with Takata’s air bag inflators, which are now bankrupt. To inflate the air bags, the firm utilized ammonium nitrate to generate a tiny explosion. However, when exposed to extreme heat and humidity, the chemical can degrade over time and burn too quickly, blowing apart a metal canister.

Takata inflators have killed at least 19 individuals in the United States and 28 people globally. In the United States, more than 400 people have been hurt.

According to documents issued Tuesday by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Volvo inflators, produced by ZF/TRW, do not utilize ammonium nitrate, but the propellant can still degrade when exposed to extreme heat and humidity.

According to the records, the fatality is the sole incidence of inflator rupture that Volvo is aware of.

The inflators were not sold to any other automakers in the United States, according to Tony Sapienza, a spokesperson for ZF/TRW. The company’s headquarters in the United States are in Livonia, Michigan, near Detroit.

According to Volvo papers, dealers will replace the inflators with new ones “with a contemporary state-of-the-art propellant/inflator.” Starting Nov. 29, owners will be notified by mail.

The first recall only applied to vehicles from the 2001 to 2003 model years that were registered in southern states and regions with excessive heat and humidity.

Volvo stated in a statement on Tuesday that, out of an abundance of caution, it has expanded the recall from Southern states to the entire country.

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