State Senator Gayle Manning (R–North Ridgeville) announced today that new oversight on the manufacture and installation of car airbags will take effect this month.
The changes follow recently passed legislation approved by the Senate Transportation Committee, which Manning chairs.
“This is a practical consumer protection bill that will keep Ohioans safer on the roads,” said Manning.
Amended House Bill 177 prohibits manufacturing or installing a counterfeit or nonfunctioning airbag into an automobile.  Additionally, the bill prohibits the installation of a device that falsely tells the automobile’s diagnostics that the vehicle is equipped with proper, functioning airbags.
If violation of either of those prohibitions results in serious physical harm to an individual, the person would be charged with a felony to the fifth degree. 
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration released a warning about counterfeit airbags in 2012.  The administration found counterfeit airbags most common in cars that had one or more airbags replaced in the last three years at a repair shop not associated with a new-car dealership.
Proponents of the legislation included the Ohio Manufacturers’ Association, Auto Alliance, Automotive Recyclers Association, Global Automakers, and the Coalition Against Insurance Fraud.
Amended House Bill 177 was enacted in December 2012 after passing both the House and the Senate unanimously.  Its provisions take effect on March 20, 2014.

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