Ohio, other states reach $85 million settlement with Honda over airbags

Ohio
Honda-Settlement

FILE – This July 31, 2018 file photo, shows an employee of Honda Motor Co. cleaning a Honda car displayed at its headquarters in Tokyo. Honda has reached an $85 million settlement, Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2020, with multiple states over allegations that it hid safety failures in the airbags of certain Honda and Acura vehicles sold in the U.S. The settlement ties up an investigation into Honda’s alleged failure to inform regulators and consumers of issues related to the significant risk of rupture in the frontal airbag systems installed in certain cars, which could cause metal fragments to fly into the passenger compartments. (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara, File)

NEW YORK (AP/WCMH) — Honda has reached an $85 million settlement with multiple states over allegations that it hid safety failures in the airbags of certain Honda and Acura vehicles sold in the U.S.

The settlement ties up an investigation into Honda’s alleged failure to inform regulators and consumers of issues related to the significant risk of rupture in the frontal airbag systems installed in certain cars, which could cause metal fragments to fly into the passenger compartments.

Attorney General Dave Yost says Ohio was one of the state’s that was part of the agreement.

“I’d never buy a car if I knew systems meant to save me and my family could actually hurt us,” Yost said. “That is what Honda denied Ohio consumers – the chance to make the best decisions for their families. This agreement will ensure that doesn’t happen again.”

Under the terms of the consent judgment, which will be filed with the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas, Honda has agreed toinjunctive relief which, among other things, requires it to:

  • Take steps to ensure that future airbag designs include “fail-safe” features to protect passengers in the event the inflator ruptures.
  • Adopt changes to its procurement process for frontal airbags, ensure that its suppliers have the appropriate industry certifications and satisfy key industry performance standards, as well as improve record-keeping and parts tracking.
  • Implement recurrence prevention procedures designed to prevent a tragedy like this from happening again, such as requiring that Honda approve all new frontal airbag designs before the company will consider them for use in new vehicles.
  • Abide by prohibitions on misleading advertisements and point of sale representations regarding the safety of Honda’s vehicles, including the airbags.
  • Make improvements in critical areas such as risk management, quality control, supplier oversight, training and certifications, and implement mandatory whistleblower protections.

Honda also agreed to pay the participating attorneys general a total of $85,151,210.15, of which Ohio’s share is $2,367,714.89.

The systems were designed and made by Takata Corp.

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