Jan. 11 (UPI) -- Ford warned thousands of truck owners to stop driving their vehicles following deaths related to defective airbag inflators from Japanese supplier Takata.
The company and federal regulators urged 2,900 owners of certain 2006 Ford Ranger pickup trucks to stop driving the vehicles and contact their dealers to replace the trucks' Takata air bag inflators after confirming a death related to a faulty inflator.
Two fatalities have occurred due to driver-side airbag inflator ruptures from Takata inflators built on the same day. The first occurred in January 2016.
Ford was notified on Dec. 22 about a crash that occurred in West Virginia July 1, 2017, involving a 2006 Ford Ranger equipped with a ruptured Takata driver-side inflator.
The vehicle was inspected Dec. 27 and ford confirmed the inflator ruptured resulting in a driver fatality and notified the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
The fatality brings the total number of deaths related to defective Takata air bags to 15 in the United states and 21 globally.
The faulty inflators have caused the largest recall in history, potentially affecting 46 million vehicles in the United States.
Toyota and Honda collectively added more than one million vehicles to the recall list Wednesday to replace the potentially explosive airbag inflators.
Safety concers stem from a chemical in the devices that create small explosions to inflate the airbags quickly during a crash, which can burn too quickly and blow apart if stored in high temperatures or strong humidity.