TOKYO -- A Japanese women has filed a negligence suit against Takata Corp. and Nissan Motor Co. after she sustained injuries when a passenger-side airbag made by Takata exploded in her Nissan vehicle last year, NHK national television reported today.
This is the first time a suit has been filed against Takata and an automaker in Japan over defective airbags. Takata is conducting a massive global recall of its faulty airbag inflators, and faces lawsuits in the United States over deaths and injuries linked to air bags which can explode violently.
The Japanese suit is related to an incident in October, when the woman sustained injuries to her wrist and head after the passenger-side airbag in a 2006 Nissan X-Trail SUV deployed with excessive force following a collision, spraying small, sharp metal objects into the vehicle.
Citing sources involved in the investigation, NHK said that the woman's husband had taken the vehicle into their Nissan dealer a few months before to replace a recalled airbag inflator, but was unable to get the product replaced because of a lack of replacement parts.
"We are cooperating with the investigation," Nissan said in a statement. "However, as it is a matter under investigation, we decline to comment further."
Takata was not immediately available for comment.
Nissan in November said the vehicle involved in the accident had been included on a recall list earlier last year due to concerns about its passenger side airbag, but was found not to contain any moisture leaks when the vehicle was brought in for inspection.