Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, the parent company of Dodge, has announced the recall of 297,000 Dodge Grand Caravan minivans in Kentucky and throughout North America. The affected minivans were part of the 2011-12 model year. They are impacted by a potential problem with the driver’s side airbag that causes it to deploy inadvertently.
The automaker reported that the issue is linked to electrical wiring inside the vehicle that can develop significant wear over time, leading to a short circuit. This could then trigger the driver’s side airbags. Unlike other recalls like the Takata airbag recall, this consumer automobile recall is related to wiring problems in older vehicles.
The wiring can cause a short circuit after rubbing against pieces of trim on the steering wheel over years of use. A second short circuit could then cause the airbag to deploy. There have been 13 minor injuries caused by these accidental airbag deployments in the Grand Caravan.
While the automaker said that there have been no reports of crashes linked to this problem, it is unclear how many total reports of inadvertent airbag deployment have been received. Owners of Dodge Grand Caravans will be notified by mail about the recall. Once they take their vehicles to dealers, technicians will inspect, replace or repair the wiring as needed to avoid the problem.
Auto manufacturers may be responsible for injuries, crashes or other serious damages caused by defects in their products. A product liability lawyer may be able to provide advice and guidance to people who have been injured as a result of defective or dangerous products on the market. Automobile design defects, from suddenly deploying airbags to other problems, can lead to serious car crashes, medical bills and other long-term impacts. A lawyer can help an injured person to recover compensation to the harms brought to them due to dangerous products or defective parts.