New airbag tests shed light on Houston man's death

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Carlos Solis' 2002 Honda Accord was involved in a crash on January 18. He was killed. (KTRK)

Was a Spring man killed by his airbag? New tests are in, shedding light on what went so terribly wrong.

This is all linked to a massive recall of airbags last summer. In a crash, the airbag can shoot out shrapnel that can cause serious injuries, even death. Just as scary is the thought that many drivers affected may have not gotten their airbags checked.

Millions of vehicles have been recalled and attorneys announced results of an inspection they say shows that a fender bender caused a faulty airbag to explode, possibly leading to the death of a Spring man.

Carlos Solis' 2002 Honda Accord was involved in a crash on January 18. Investigators called the crash minor. Neither vehicle involved had much damage, but Solis was killed.

The airbag deployed and Honda confirmed shrapnel from inside the airbag flew out.

An autopsy hasn't been completed yet, but blunt force trauma was listed as the primary cause of death.

Takata, the airbag manufacturer, has been blamed for five other airbag-related deaths and is recalling millions of airbags it provided to car companies, including Honda.

Honda has confirmed to Eyewitness News that Solis' car was included in a 2011 recall for the driver's side airbag, but the airbag was never repaired.

Solis' attorneys allege Solis was never notified about the recall.

"It's not something that happened in the past," said Solis' attorney, April Strahan. "It's not something that's still back in November and in December when we were having these hearings in front of Congress. These are continuing incidents and until there is a real solution, there's going to be more people who are meeting the same fate as Mr. Solis.

Attorneys and family members from the Solis family are urging you to check to see if your vehicle is on the list.

Honda and Acura owners can check their vehicles' recall status at www.recalls.honda.com or by calling their authorized dealer.

You can also check all recalls on the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration's web site.

FULL STATEMENT FROM HONDA

    American Honda has confirmed that the Takata driver's airbag inflator ruptured in the crash of a 2002 Honda Accord on Jan. 18, 2015 in Houston, Texas. This crash resulted in the death of the driver. Our thoughts and deepest sympathies are with the family of the driver during this difficult time.

    Honda is currently in communication with representatives of the family in an effort to further investigate the situation and to address their concerns.

    Honda has communicated preliminary information collected to date about this crash to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

    The vehicle involved in this crash was included in a 2011 recall for the driver's frontal airbag inflator, and our records indicate that the recall repair was never completed.

    American Honda continues to urge owners of Honda and Acura vehicles affected by the Takata airbag inflator recalls to get their vehicles repaired at authorized dealers as soon as possible. Vehicle owners can check their vehicles' recall status at www.recalls.honda.com for Honda owners or www.recalls.acura.com for Acura owners or by calling their authorized dealer.
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