A woman suing Takata Corp. and American Honda Motor Co. Inc. over the infamous air bag inflator defect which has caused the historic recall of some 34 million vehicles this year is seeking punitive damages for the auto companies’ concealment of the defect. The Plaintiff, Patricia Mincey, is seeking to amend her complaint to include a request for punitive damages, saying that there is “substantial evidence” about the Defendants’ “long-standing knowledge of the dangers and occurrence of air bag excessive deployment incidents.” Ms. Mincey filed suit against Duval Motors and Honda, Takata and their subsidiaries in January, saying she was injured in a June 2014 car crash because her driver’s side air bag in a 2001 Honda Civic didn’t deploy. The resulting injuries to her spine left Ms. Mincey quadriplegic. It appears that Honda recalled the air bag in her vehicle four days after her crash. It’s alleged by the Plaintiff:
The Takata and Honda defendants misleadingly promised safety and trust, while at the same time purposely concealing evidence of air bag defects in the air bag systems in vehicles, including Honda vehicles, from the American public. They also hid their alleged knowledge of deaths arising from the defect.
As we have reported previously, so far there are at least eight deaths linked to the Takata air bag defect. Takata and Honda knew about the problem as early as 2001. Takata air bags had exploded in several models including a 2001 Honda Passport. Ms. Mincey made claims against Honda and Takata for negligence, strict liability and fraudulent concealment. A trial in her case has been scheduled for next August. Her suit was sent from federal court back to state court earlier this year.
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