The U.S. government said it will fine the Takata corporation $14,000 for every day it refuses to comply with its investigation into the safety of the company’s air bags.
The company’s air bags, which have been known to explode in a shower of shrapnel upon releasing, have been linked to the world-wide recall of 25 million cars and at least six deaths, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said Friday that U.S. regulators will levy the fine until the Japanese air-bag supplier cooperates with the investigation. He also called for federal legislation to “provide the tools and resources needed to change the culture of safety for bad actors like Takata.”
“Safety is a shared responsibility and Takata’s failure to fully cooperate with our investigation is unacceptable and will not be tolerated,” said Secretary Foxx. “For each day that Takata fails to fully cooperate with our demands, we will hit them with another fine.”
Takata said that it was “surprised and disappointed” by the new fine and fired back that the company has met “regularly” with National Highway Traffic Safety Administration engineers to identify the cause of the safety problems. The corporation added that it has given nearly 2.5 million documents to NHTSA during its investigation.
“We strongly disagree with their characterization that we have not been fully cooperating with them,” said Takata in a statement. “We remain fully committed to cooperating with NHTSA in the interests of advancing auto safety for the driving public.”
Bloomberg reports that the fines could hit a maximum of $70 million under U.S. law.