Changing the pillow will take about an hour (Photo: Kobi Liani)
The largest service call in the history of the local automobile industry is underway: 97 thousand Skoda and Seat cars will be ordered for inspection and replacement when necessary of the airbag in the steering wheel.
Vehicle owners will receive summons letters in the coming weeks.
This is as part of the global recall of the replacement of the faulty airbags of the Japanese company Tacta, which for years and knowingly provided airbags that could disintegrate while being deployed in an accident.
Included in the recall are 82,511 thousand Skoda models and 14,873 thousand Seat models, making it the largest recall ever in Israel.
In the largest recall to date, Mazda recalled about 71,000 cars in 2015 due to a contact problem in the starter mechanism.
Mazda also recalled about 40,000 cars in 2016 to replace the Takata airbags in its cars.
Skoda models included in the call are from the years 2013-2018: Fabia, Rapid, Yeti, Octavia and Superb.
Seat models that are included in the call are from the years 2014-2017: Ibiza, Toledo, Leon, Atca and Alhambra.
The recall can be carried out at the authorized Skoda and Seat garages, and it is better to coordinate in advance in light of the expected load in them.
The problem with the airbags produced by the Japanese company was officially revealed in 2015, and has already led to calls to the garage (recalls) for about 100 million cars worldwide, and to the bankruptcy of the company, which also supplied the automotive industry with seat belts and other components.
Among the others, cars manufactured by Honda, Toyota, Mazda, Nissan, Subaru, BMW and Chrysler were called to replace airbags.
Steering wheel airbag.
Takta knew that due to the penetration of moisture it could break down upon opening, and continued to produce (photo: manufacturer's website, manufacturer)
Tacta's people knew several years before about the danger of moisture infiltrating the controlled explosion mechanism of the cushions, which is designed to ensure that they open within a few tenths of the time, and meet the passenger's body before it hits the vehicle parts following the impact of the accident.
The penetration of moisture causes an explosion that is too strong which breaks the opening mechanism and causes metal parts to fly towards the passenger or the driver, at a speed of more than 300 km/h. So far
there are records of 17 deaths in the US, and 30 around the world, of drivers And passengers whose airbag, which is supposed to save their lives in an accident, and prevent dangerous contact of their heads and bodies with parts of the vehicle, actually caused their death.
In most accidents, the structure of the vehicle remains intact, so that proper operation of the airbags can reduce the intensity of the injury to the occupants of the vehicle, and save them from serious internal and external injuries.
In the USA, it is estimated that airbags save the lives of thousands of people a year. Side airbags, for example, reduce the risk of death of private car drivers in a side accident by 37%, and drivers of off-road vehicles by 52%.
According to the regulations of the Ministry of Transport, recalls are carried out free of charge by the vehicle owner.
The vehicle owner must perform it within six months of receiving the summons, otherwise the vehicle will not be able to pass a test, and it will not be possible to transfer ownership.