An investigation by the Wall Street Journal reveals that up to 50 car models and 12 brands might be equipped with potentially explosive airbag inflators—that’s 6.8 million cars, according to the Journal. The paper arrived at these numbers by examining documentation from automakers given to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration during an 8-year investigation. The problematic inflators were made by ARC Automative, based in Knoxville, Tennessee, per the AP, and there’s a dispute playing out between the feds and the manufacturer—the former wants a recall and the latter sees no need. The inflators reportedly have the potential to explode upon activation, rather than deploying the airbag in a controlled manner.
The AP explains that if inflators explode, they can eject metal fragments—a threat that the Journal reports has proven deadly in two instances and caused several injuries. A USA Today article emphasizes that the recall covers a