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Takata advertising stepped up
Airbag safety recall advertising blitz returns to prod stubborn vehicle owners
1 Aug 2019
THE Australian motor industry has escalated its Takata airbag recall advertising campaign to try to convince an estimated 500,000 vehicle owners to get potentially dangerous airbags checked and fixed if necessary.
The new advertising campaign that goes to air this week uses a series of repetitive commercials to basically annoy people into paying attention to the presence of a potentially fatal flaw in their cars.
So far, more than two million vehicles have been rectified in Australia as part of the global recall, but the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI), which is co-ordinating the awareness campaign on behalf of affected manufacturers, says too many drivers still need to get the message.
FCAI chief executive Tony Weber said the first phase of the advertising campaign, launched in July last year, had worked well, helping to convince more than seven million vehicle owners to check the status of their vehicle on the www.ismyairbagsafe.com.au website database.
“However, there are still many more vehicles in Australia that require faulty airbags to be replaced,” he said. “Many owners of outstanding vehicles have simply overlooked the need to check the status of their vehicles.
“Many others may erroneously believe that a faulty airbag will not affect them. By increasing the tempo of the advertising with more direct messaging, we hope to seize the attention of vehicle owners and their families.”
GoAuto understands the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission (ACCC) is preparing to issue the latest quarterly update on the numbers of vehicles involved in the recall.
In the March quarterly update, the ACCC said 2.1 million vehicles or 69 per cent of effected cars had been fixed, leaving 734,000 or 24 per cent still to be submitted by owners for checking.
Of the outstanding vehicles, 12,000 were regarded as in need of critical attention, and of those, 8800 were fitted with the dangerous Alpha Takata airbags that are regarded as having a 50 per cent chance of misdeployment in a crash.
The industry estimates that since then, about 200,000 more vehicles might have been dealt with by dealer service centres, leaving about 500,000 still to go. The ACCC figures should clarify that.
Phase two of the advertising campaign will be broadcast across television, radio, newspapers, digital and social media, targeting vehicle owners in outer metropolitan suburbs and regional and rural cities and towns where vehicle manufacturers believe many of the outstanding vehicles are located.
Some of the remaining vehicles on car manufacturers’ databases cannot be found, meaning they are likely to have been written off, rebirthed or exported.
The bulk of the outstanding vehicles needing attention are owned by people who have been contacted but for whatever reason have not or will not take them to a dealership for attention.
A final group is in the low-risk category awaiting their place in the queue for the work to be done.
Vehicle owners should go to www.ismyairbagsafe.com.au, enter the vehicle’s registration and state or territory. They can also check by texting TAKATA to 0487 AIRBAG (247 224).
Replacement of airbags is free.
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