Confidential Takata Settlements Conceal Important Details from Victims
With settlement agreements recently reached over allegedly defective Takata Corp. airbags, vital information that could be used by future personal injury plaintiffs has been sealed off, putting future claimants at a distinct disadvantage.
Defendants Takata, Honda, GM, and Fiat Chrysler likely rushed to settle in order to keep valuable evidence pertaining to the accidents secret. Details about the victims injuries and circumstances surrounding their deaths are now off limits. Five out of a dozen lawsuits were settled, according to Bloomberg News, with another currently under review.
In truth, the confidential settlements only add to a growing confusion that surrounds the roughly 7-million vehicle recall, affecting at least 10 car manufacturers and leaving millions of drivers unsure whether they are impacted.
A lawsuit filed Nov. 17 in Florida by the family of deceased Honda Accord driver Hien Tran alleges that the company’s failure to report consumer safety complaints in a timely manner ultimately led to her brutal death. The suit alleges that Trans airbag exploded with such force that the shrapnel expelled from the device made deep lacerations that appeared to have been the result of a stabbing.
Honda says that it has linked three additional deaths to the airbags, including the Tran incident and the death of one pregnant woman in Malaysia.
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