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Honda asks mechanics, auto body shops to help tell customers about recalled airbag inflators

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Calling it a “unique initiative,” Honda on Thursday announced it will ask independent mechanical and collision repair shops to check customers’ models against the years receiving Takata airbag inflator recalls.

Customer apathy or unawareness has been a concern as the government and OEMs seek to swap out potentially fatal Takata inflators.

Honda plans to send an email to more than 50,000 independent auto body and mechanical repair shops containing a plea for help from American Honda parts and service Senior Vice President Bruce Smith and English and Spanish posters describing how technicians and other staff can help.

“Consumer safety is everyone’s responsibility” Smith said in a statement. “The purpose of this initiative is to help create awareness for your customers and make it easy for your service writers and estimators to check each customer’s car to see if it has an open recall. With your help, we can ensure our customers, friends, and loved ones are driving a safe vehicle.”

Another burst from Honda will send letters and posters to more than 120,000 independent mechanical shops and 40,000 collision repair businesses.

Based on at least the collision repair mailing list, Honda seems to be targeting virtually everybody in the industry; presumably, that’s also the case for garages as well.

honda airbag

Besides the fact that it’s a nice thing to do for your customers, it’d be interesting to see if this helps shops score brownie points towards getting installation work of the safer airbag assemblies.

So far, such work has been the domain of dealerships, but given the size of the recall, both the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and a Mitchell industry executive have proposed the idea. We’re not aware of a decision being made yet by the feds.

More information:

“American Honda Engages Independent Shops to Help Reach Honda and Acura Customers for Airbag Recall”

Honda, Nov. 19, 2015

Featured image: Calling it a “unique initiative,” Honda on Thursday announced it will ask independent mechanical and collision repair shops to check customers models against the years receiving Takata airbag inflator recalls. (Provided by Honda)