COLOMBO (EconomyNext) – Lanka Harness Company, which makes impact sensors for automobile airbags and seat belts, has won a big order to supply replacements needed in the global recall of defective airbags.
Lanka Harness Executive Chairman Rohan Pallewatta said he will have to double existing production which now can go up to around two million units a month.
The replacement order will be delivered over a two-year period, he said.
Lanka Harness, which now employs 330 people, has gained recognition for supplying global automobile component manufacturers by meeting the most demanding international quality requirement, of below 1PPM or below one part per million defect tolerant rate.
Pallewatta has said the quality requirement was required given the sensitive nature of the component, as air bags cannot fail and had to inflate on impact in case of an accident to save lives.
Lanka Harness also plans to open a plant in Mexico to expand production.
The international recall by the air bag manufacturer, Takata Corporation, has affected more than 30 million vehicles in the United States made by 10 automakers.
Last week, Honda and Toyota recalled 3 million vehicles in Europe.
Eight people have died and hundreds more have been injured as a result of the faulty airbags, according to reports.
The problem was found to be defective inflator and propellent devices in the driver and passenger airbags which may deploy improperly in a crash, shooting metal fragments into the vehicle’s occupants.
According to a Reuters report, in 2002 Takata’s plant in Mexico recorded 60 to 80 defects for every million inflators shipped to automakers – six to eight times above Takata’s quality control limit.
During last week’s shareholder meeting, Takata Chief Executive Shigehisa Takada apologized for the deaths and injuries the faulty airbags have caused.
Takata Corp has said that in addition to adding production capacity to meet demand, it is working with customers and other airbag producers to produce more replacement units and was also dramatically increasing testing and analysis of inflators.