Kia, Hyundai belt tensioners: controller open probe

Hyundai and Kia issued five separate recalls for ruptured seat belt pretensioners from October 2021 to April this year.

WASHINGTON – The Bureau of Investigations of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has opened an inquiry about seat belt pretensioners on certain 2020-2022 Kia/Hyundai vehicles, stating that they could rupture or explode.

A pre-tensioner is part of the seat belt system that locks the seat belt in the event of an accident.

The ODI said if the pretensioner snaps, it could release splinters and cause abrasions or other injuries.

ODI is aware of three separate incidents of possible seat belt pretensioner failure. In all three incidents, the driver’s seat belt pre-tensioner deployed abnormally, causing metal fragments to enter the rear cabin and injure rear occupants.

Hyundai and Kia issued five separate recalls for ruptured seat belt pretensioners from October 2021 to April this year.

The initial ODI survey includes 2021 Hyundai Elantra/Elantra HEV vehicles; 2021 Hyundai Venue vehicles; 2021 Genesis GV80; 2022 Genesis GV70 vehicles; 2020-2021 Hyundai Accent vehicles; 2022 Hyundai Elantra/Elantra HEV vehicles; 2022 Kia Sorento Hybrid/Sorento PHEV Vehicles; 2021-2022 Hyundai Elantra vehicles and 2020 Hyundai Accent vehicles.

The ODI said it could expand the scope of the investigation if needed.

Hyundai had already announced a recall of 239,000 cars in the USA in May because the seat belt tensioners could explode and injure vehicle occupants. Three injuries were reported, two in the US and one in Singapore.

In a letter to the Korean automaker, state regulators said the driver’s and front passenger’s seat belt pretensioners could explode when deployed, sending splinters through the vehicle. Seat belt pretensioners tighten the seat belts in preparation for an accident.

https://www.kvue.com/article/news/nation-world/kia-hyundai-seat-belt-pretensioners-investigation/507-da25a8e8-62ee-46e7-8185-8f803fdea4dc Kia, Hyundai belt tensioners: controller open probe

Laura Coffey

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