Honda expands Takata airbag recall to Canada

Replacing inflators on 700,000 vehicles from 2001 to 2010.

TORONTO — Honda Canada is recalling some 700,000 vehicles in Canada to replace airbag inflators implicated in five deaths and a number of injuries in the US and abroad.

The action is part of a worldwide recall safety campaign initiated over concerns about the airbags made by Takata Corp. of Japan, which can inflate with too much force, blowing apart a metal canister and spewing shrapnel.

Dozens of injuries have been reported and at least five people have died due to the problem, four of them in the US and one in Malaysia.

However, the company says it is unaware of any injuries or deaths in Canada related to the problem involving a Honda vehicle.

Honda, like other automakers, had previously limited the recalls to high-humidity areas, where investigations have shown that the airbag inflator propellant, ammonium nitrate, can burn faster than designed if exposed to prolonged high humidity, causing airbags to inflate too quickly.

However, last week, Honda announced it was expanding its recall of certain 2001 to 2010 Honda and Acura vehicles to all 52 US states and further widened the recall to include Canada.

“This action is being taken to address the concerns of our customers residing outside the regions of high temperature and high absolute humidity, thereby supporting the ongoing investigation,” Honda said in a statement.

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The vehicles being recalled in Canada include 2001-2007 Honda Accord with 4-cylinder engines; 2001-2002 Honda Accord with V6 engines; 2001-2005 Honda Civic; 2002-2006 Honda CR-V; 2003-2010 Honda Element; 2002-2004 Honda Odyssey; 2003-2007 Honda Pilot; 2006 Honda Ridgeline; 2003-2006 Acura MDX; 2002-2003 Acura TL and 2002 Acura CL.

Mazda is expanding its US recall for Takata air bags that may explode to the entire country, following Japanese rival Honda in the decision.

Mazda Motor Corp. said it will officially notify the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration soon, but was still compiling details including the exact vehicle numbers requiring recall.

The recalls have concentrated on regions with high humidity, which is suspected as factor in the explosions.

So far the Mazda recalls for driver side air bags total about 87,000 vehicles. Making the recall nationwide would likely lift that number to 330,000 vehicles.

© 2014 The Canadian Press

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