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Australia tells 20,000 drivers to park their cars and leave them parked.

Editorial Staff

The global airbag scandal involving TAKATA airbags just won't go away. In Australia, BMW, GM Holden, Honda, Mitsubishi and Toyota have been trying to contact some 20,000 car owners to replace the defective equipment but have had no response. Now the government has stepped in. "do not drive these cars at all," it says.

Describing the problem as "critical," the ACCC, which supervises consumer affairs, Delia Rickard, the ACCC's Deputy Chairman said "“Under this urgent recall, drivers are entitled to have their vehicles towed to the dealership by the manufacturer and have the airbag replaced for free. Drivers may be entitled to a loan vehicle while the airbag is replaced.”

Words are not being minced: "Cars with airbags listed as ‘critical’ should not be driven. Classification as ‘critical’ means manufacturers have assessed these airbags as being particularly unsafe. A Takata airbag misdeployment can result in death or serious injury, even in a minor collision."

The 20,000 "critical" instances are a tiny proportion of vehicles which, despite a two year campaign, have not had their airbags replaced. ACCC says that it has been told that 425,971 vehicles are still to be rectified despite the the compulsory recall.

Critical airbags are a sub-category of faulty Takata airbags that require
immediate replacement because of their increased safety risk for drivers and

This number may increase as manufacturers continue to review the safety
risks, so drivers should re-check to ensure their airbag is in need of
critical replacement.

“This recall is a rolling recall, which means that more vehicles can be added to the critical category at any time, and we’re urging consumers not to ignore recall messages from manufacturers to get their airbag replaced,” Rickard said.

The list of vehicles currently marked as "critical" is as follows:

Critical vehicles

* Holden – *1,843* vehicles – 2010 Holden Cruze
* Honda – *6,043* vehicles – Honda City MY2012, CR-V MY 2011, Insight
MY2012-2013, Jazz MY2012-2014 & Jazz Hybrid MY2012-2013, Honda Civic
MY2006-2011, Jazz Hybrid MY2012 and Legend MY2007-2012, Honda Accord
MY2001-2007 and Honda MDX MY2003-2006
* Toyota – *582 *vehicles – 2003 – 2005 Toyota Echo and Rav4
* BMW – *7,909* vehicles – BMW 5 Series (E39) MY2002-2003, BMW 3 Series
(E46) MY2001-2006 & BMW X5 (E53) MY2003
* Mitsubishi – *3,254 *vehicles – 2007 – 2014 ML & MN Triton

It is interesting that, given that there are 425,971 vehicles still to have the work done that the number of airbags outstanding is only 483,071 airbags.

Consumers can check whether their car is affected by visiting:

* http://www.IsMyAirbagSafe.com.au and entering their state/territory and
registration plate number or by texting *0487 AIRBAG *(247224) and
following the prompts

* the vehicle manufacturer’s website

* https://www.productsafety.gov....

and entering their VIN number in their Recall Database or by contacting
them direct for information

* ProductSafety.gov.au http://www.productsafety.gov.au and checking either
the active or future recalls lists with further information available
about the recall.