Toyota warns 7,300 Canadians to stop driving, get immediate repairs

Toyota warns 7,300 Canadians to stop driving, get immediate repairs

Toyota Motor Corp. is urging owners of certain older vehicle models to stop driving and get immediate repairs because an airbag inflator could explode and potentially kill motorists. 

The Japanese automaker said the “Do not drive” advisory covers some 2003-04 model year Corolla, 2003-04 Corolla Matrix and 2004-05 RAV4s with Takata airbag inflators.

Toyota Canada spokesperson Philippe Crowe said the air bag warning is not new, but the company is taking the step to warn drivers who have not yet responded to the Takata recall from 2015.

“The ‘stop driving’ notice is being sent to owners of vehicles who have not, after many communications attempt, had the recall procedure done on their vehicle,” he said in an email.

Crowe said the Canadian recall affects 7,300 vehicles in Canada, and owners of the affected vehicles can contact a Toyota dealership to have the recall procedure done free of charge. 

Owners who believe their vehicle could be included can check Toyota’s website.

More than 30 deaths worldwide and hundreds of injuries in vehicles since 2009 are linked to Takata airbag inflators that can explode, unleashing metal shrapnel inside cars and trucks. 

In 2015, Takata Corp. agreed to declare 33.8 million airbags defective in the largest auto recall in history. At the time, eleven automakers, including Honda and Toyota, recalled 36 million vehicles worldwide.

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