Honda has announced they are expanding a previously announced recall of certain 2001 and 2002 cars and trucks to replace the driver's airbag inflator. This will involve an additional 378,758 vehicles in the U.S. The problem found is that the driver's airbag inflators may deploy with too much pressure. This may cause the inflator casing to rupture and could result in injury or fatality.
As of February 2010 Honda is aware of 12 incidents related to this issue, they have concluded they cannot be completely certain the driver's airbag inflator will perform as designed in the affected vehicles. As a result they have decided to add certain 2001 and 2002 Accord, Civic, Odyssey, CR-V, and selected 2002 Acura TL vehicles to this recall.
Honda will begin notifying owners of affected vehicles this month. If you wish to know in advance if your vehicle is involved, Honda owners can use the following link: Honda recall information or call (800) 999-1009; Acura owners can use the following link: Acura recall information or call (800) 382-2238. When owners of these vehicles receive written notification of this recall from Honda, they should contact their authorized Honda or Acura dealer to schedule an appointment for repair.
16 months ago Honda informed the National Highway & Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) of a plan to recall fewer than 4,000 model year 2001 Accord and Civic vehicles to replace the driver's airbag inflator, based on their analysis of 4 instances where the airbag casing ruptured on deployment.
After the original recall in November, 2008, 2 additional incidents from vehicles not included in the original recall were reported. Honda's ongoing analysis led them to recognize the potential for additional vehicles to exhibit this symptom. In July, 2009 Honda expanded that recall to include approximately 440,000 model year 2001 and 2002 Accord, Civic and certain 2002 Acura TL vehicles.
There were two types manufacturing machines used in pressing the inflator propellant. One process allowed Honda to verify that all of the propellant was within specification, the other process cannot be verified to their satisfaction. Even though testing has shown the inflators in question perform correctly Honda has decided to recall all inflator assemblies that were not verified during production because they cannot be absolutely certain they will all perform as designed.