CBS News Highlights Motley Rice Attorney, Expert and Client in Takata Recall Feature
CBS Evening News reporter Jeff Glor recently traveled to South Carolina to interview Motley Rice attorney Kevin Dean, the firm’s automotive forensic technical advisor Bill Williams and Motley Rice client Angelina Sujata. The interviews were featured on CBS Evening News on May 19, 2015, and tell the story of how Kevin and Bill came to be the only known people, other than Takata, testing recalled airbags.
Angelina, who was involved in a rear-end collision in 2012 that resulted in her being hit in the chest several times by metal shards when the Takata airbag in her 2001 Honda Civic allegedly exploded, spoke with Jeff about people’ initial reaction to her injuries.
“Everybody kept telling me ‘airbags don’t do that.’ The problem is, these ones are and that’s not right,” said Angelina.
“This is the absolute worst automotive products liability defect we’ve ever seen, ever,” said Motley Rice Takata attorney Kevin Dean.
Along with filing seven federal suits—including Sujata’s—against Takata, Honda, Nissan and others alleging catastrophic injuries and wrongful deaths caused by defective airbags, Motley Rice has also hired forensic technical advisor Bill Williams to independently test Takata airbags. In the video segment, Williams demonstrates the testing procedure and how he has documented three airbag ruptures to date, with one very visibly showing shrapnel flying in the driver’s direction.
According to CBS, one out of every four vehicles on the road in America is being recalled because of these potentially deadly airbags, making it the largest auto recall in U.S. history. These airbags are linked to at least six deaths and more than 100 injuries.
Hours before the CBS feature aired, NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind and U.S. DOT Secretary Anthony Foxx announced the expansion of Takata’s recall to include about 33.8 million vehicles manufactured by 11 automakers for defects affecting both driver- and passenger-side airbags.
Motley Rice attorney Kevin Dean has consistently called for Takata to expand its airbag recall and has filed several lawsuits for people allegedly injured by the defective airbags. In February 2015, he led a push to retain a percentage of the Takata airbags that were removed from recalled vehicles. Before this, all Takata airbags removed as part of the recall process were being sent back to Takata’s Japan facility for in-house testing, leaving none available for independent testing in the United States apart from those scavenged from junk yards.