The consumer watchdog has added over a million vehicles to a recall list as it is believed that they contain potentially deadly Takata airbags.
The defective airbags were found to expel shrapnel upon activation if the propelling mechanism had been exposed to large amounts of moisture.
Twenty three people have died as a result of the faulty airbags world wide, with one death occurring in Sydney last year. A further 230 people have been seriously injured.
A further 1.1 million cars containing the airbags were added to a revised recall list on Sunday, published by the ACCC, including the Mercedes Benz C Class, Ford Mondeo and Toyota Yaris.
A spokeswoman for the ACCC has said that the total number of vehicles under “active recall” at the end of April was sitting at about 2.8 million. Affected consumers were contacted about the issue and 1.9 million of these people have already had their airbags replaced with 900,000 yet to be completed.
The revised recall list included vehicles due to have their airbags replaces from May 2018, meaning that in total around two million vehicles still need to have their airbags replaced.
Assistant Minister Treasurer Michael Sukkar has said that those affected by the “future recall” will be notified by email, phone or text message when it is time for the airbags to be replaced.
“My message to all Australian drivers is do not ignore or delay responding to a letter from your vehicle manufacturer asking you to have airbags replaced,” said Mr Sukkar to the AAP. “If you don’t have your car’s airbag replaced, you are taking a serious risk in terms of your safety.”
The compulsory recall was first announced back in February and has developed into one of the largest in Australian history. The death of a 58-year-old man at Cabramatta in Sydney’s southwest in July 2017 was the first incident linked to the faulty airbags.
A 21-year-old Northern Territory woman was also affected by the airbag malfunction as she was hit in the head by a small metal fragment during a crash in Darwin.
Any consumers that have difficulties or experience delays with the replacement of their airbags can contact the ACCC for advice.