Thousands of cars and trucks may be equipped with dangerous counterfeit air bags that won’t deploy when needed, or may even fire dangerous shrapnel at drivers and passengers if they do, U.S. government officials said this week.

Who is at risk?

Anyone who has had an air bag replaced in the past three years at any repair shop other than a new car dealership, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

To date, no deaths or injuries have been linked to these faulty air bags, NHTSA officials said.

Visit for more information and resources that may help you determine whether your vehicle is at risk.

You can read more about the government warnings and see the video that NHTSA officials released here.

An inspection to determine whether a replacement air bag is counterfeit will run about $100, on average. It’s an unfair expense. But if you have any doubts about the reliability of the air bags in your vehicle, we encourage you to invest the time, and money if necessary, to ensure you and your passengers’ safety.

Author: Matt Griswold

After a 10-year newspaper journalism career, Matt Griswold spent another decade writing about the automotive aftermarket and motorsports. He was part of the original OnAllCylinders editorial team when it launched in 2012.