Takata Will Not Offer Upfront Compensation to Airbag Victims
July 13, 2015—Takata rejected the suggestion that it should establish a fund to compensate victims of its defective airbags, according to a report by USA Today.
In a letter, Takata told U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) that it “believes that a national compensation fund is not currently required.”
Takata is at the center of the largest recall in U.S. history after it was determined that its airbags were prone to exploding with too much force and ejecting shrapnel. The defect has been blamed in at least eight deaths and 100 injuries. The company will not offer upfront compensation to victims.
Kevin Kennedy, Takata executive vice president of North America, told Blumenthal that the company deeply regrets the defects but "has already resolved a number of claims" and will continue to weigh settlements on a case by case basis.
"Takata is apparently unwilling to acknowledge its responsibility for these tragic deaths and injuries, or do justice for victims and their loved ones. I will press Takata to reconsider this callous misjudgment, and do right by the innocent victims of its harm." Blumenthal said, according to USA Today.
This all comes after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administrator (NHTSA) Administrator Mark Rosekind told reporters in Washington last week that he will most likely be conducting a special hearing in the fall to determine whether Takata repeatedly violated federal standards on recalls.
After the letter was released to the media, Takata issued a statement that expressed its commitment “to treating fairly anyone injured as a result of an inflator rupture.”
"While we do not believe establishing a general compensation fund is warranted at this time, we will continue to assess our position as we focus on how best to address the needs of individuals affected by an inflator rupture," said Takata, according to USA Today.