DENVER — Owners of more than 66,000 vehicles in Colorado are being warned their vehicles' airbags have been recalled due to a defect linked to 24 deaths and hundreds of injuries.
The Colorado Department of Motor Vehicles said letters will be sent in mid-February warning drivers their airbags could seriously injure or kill them or their passengers if they deploy.
A defective part inside the airbag can explode when it deploys, potentially shooting sharp metal fragments at the driver and passengers.
The letter tells owners to schedule appointments at local dealerships for immediate free recall repairs. It also urges owners to take immediate action even if their vehicles have been previously repaired due to temporary replacement parts being used on some vehicles. Those vehicles still require permanent repairs.
The DMV used records from car manufacturers to determine which affected vehicles have not yet been permanently repaired.
Approximately 67 million Takata airbags have been recalled in the U.S. over the past several years, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
"Drivers who were not the original owners of their vehicle may not be aware of an open safety recall or inadvertently dismissed the notification from the manufacturers," the DMV said.
Vehicle owners can check their Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) for open recalls by using the lookup tool on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's website.
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