Wednesday, 20 February 2013 18:37

Maryland Bill Explicitly Bans Counterfeit Airbags, Global Automakers Support Increased Counterfeit Penalties

Maryland’s HB 885 will explicitly prohibit a person from
● making, distributing, or selling a counterfeit airbag or a substandard airbag;
● installing a counterfeit airbag or a substandard airbag in a motor vehicle;
● selling or installing a device that causes the vehicle diagnostic system to inaccurately indicate that the airbag is functional when a counterfeit airbag or a substandard airbag is installed;
● representing to another person that a counterfeit airbag or a substandard airbag that is installed in a motor vehicle is not a counterfeit airbag or a substandard airbag

If the violation of this act contributes to death or bodily injury, the person is guilty of a felony.

The Association of Global Automakers has announced its support of Maryland House Bill 885. The association has been working closely with bill sponsor Delegate Keiffer Mitchell Jr.’s office to provide technical expertise on the issue.

“Counterfeit replacement airbags are a serious safety problem,” said Mike Stanton, Global Automakers’ president and CEO. “We want to do everything we can to ensure that consumers' vehicles are repaired with airbags that operate as intended, meeting strict manufacturer and government standards.”

Global Automakers and its members assisted the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), based on the agency’s discovery of recent sales and installations of counterfeit airbags that posed a risk of serious injury to the public.

“Individuals who knowingly sell or install dangerous counterfeit and substandard airbags should be punished,” Stanton said. “That is why we are working to pass legislation in Maryland and other states to bring attention to this important consumer issue.”

The bill was referred to the Maryland House Environmental Matters Committee. The committee will hold a hearing on the legislation on March 1, where Global Automakers will testify.

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