How could a slow speed crash turn an active retiree into a quadriplegic?

Family blames exploding air bag

Father's Day 2014 was the worst day of Kelly Simms’ life.

Simms said her mom wasn’t traveling more than 22 mph when the Honda she was driving collided with an SUV.

Patricia Mincey was left with catastrophic injuries.

Mincey, an active retiree who gave generously to those in need, remains hospitalized, a quadriplegic on a ventilator at Florida Hospital.

The family filed a lawsuit last week.  The case blames an exploding Takata air bag and Honda for the fact Mincey may never move again.

Last year the government recalled 7.8 million vehicles involving Takata air bags  and just days ago Sen. Bill Nelson announced the number of people injured by Takata's exploding air bags is higher than previously thought.

The toll stands at five deaths with a sixth one under investigation. There have been 64 injuries. The collision involving Mincey’s 2001 Honda Civic took place four days before the initial recall involving Hondas in Florida and California. 

"This litigation takes Honda and Takata to task for their egregious disregard for consumer safety. The companies were aware for more than a decade that these airbags had the potential to violently explode and seriously injure or even kill occupants, yet they failed to take responsibility for producing and installing a safe product and/or recalling the defective airbags. Even in the June 2014 recall, Honda downplayed the situation by using the term 'energetic' airbag deployment to describe the very defect that catastrophically and permanently injured Patricia Mincey," said Palm Beach Gardens attorney Theodore J. Leopold, of Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC.

In another case, the government just last month fined Honda $70 million for failing to report 1,700 death and injury claims dating back to 2003.

Honda said it has received another report of a driver who may have been killed by flying debris from the deployment of an air bag in one of its vehicles. It took place last week outside of Houston.

Here is a quick way to find out if the car your drive or the one you are looking to buy is on the air bag recall list or has any other open recall: https://vinrcl.safercar.gov/vin/
 
The family has set up an account to offset medical expenses. Anyone interested in assisting Patricia Mincey’s family can contribute at www.gofundme.com/c13oyc
Print this article Back to Top