US regulators have imposed a fine of up to $200 million on Japanese firm Takata for its handling of the recall of millions of airbags that are liable to explode.
Imposing its largest ever civil penalty, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also ordered Takata to stop making the inflators at the centre of the scandal.
“We know that airbag inflators made be a company called Takata are prone to explosive ruptures, sending jagged metal fragments flying through the passenger compartment,” said US Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.
The NHTSA, is part of the Department of Transportation.
The regulators cited the chemical ammonium nitrate, used as a propellant, as a factor in explosive air-bag ruptures that have caused seven deaths and nearly 100 injuries in the United States.
Of the $200 million fine it imposed, the NHTSA said: “$70 million is payable in cash. An additional $130 million would become due if Takata fails to meet its commitments or if additional violations of the Safety Act are discovered.”