Skip to main content

tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  December 4, 2014 1:30am-3:31am EST

1:30 am
two planes, two plane crashes in new york. ari thrasher came out of the parking lot outside the school and said stay right here the president will talk to the pool. said their light cameras in the cafeteria. a person has to speak there. you want to scare the children but he did go into the cafeteria. he said it's an apparent terrorist attack and i must return to washington. we raced to the plane and we were pushed aboard quickly. the door slammed and then the pentagon was hit. ..
1:31 am
>> >> to get ready for this conversation and the reds and speeches you have been giving lately and discovered one of the time you told me you're about to be a grandfather the fourth time.
1:32 am
and red tell people i covered the bush white house they think any your brother but i meant george h. w. bush said it had the privilege to go to kennebunkport there is room there for children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren. >> with my dad and my first granddaughter she is three years old and trilingual. her name is a georgia whole leonel walker bush. [laughter] her nickname is 41. she represents the new america in the new america
1:33 am
is america hopes that does not have dash as. where you're working and your effort to is your definition not the identity political form. [laughter] since taxes are american. my wife is from mexico item texan from birds eat to see in drug is the canadian. her parents were born in iraq. that is the america we should aspire to not the one where costs we defied ourselves to find where we are different but the fact you are from a different place or a different origin is irrelevant.
1:34 am
so when georgia fills out the form she will say not applicable and that is good news to be honest. [applause] >>host: i was struck the you said a couple hope reasonless that debt a nation is experiencing a crisis of opportunity. what does that mean for washington? is. >> we miss the opportunity to focus on our weaknesses weaknesses, massive gridlock. yet this is the most extraordinary country in the world. it is so much better when you hear the director general talk about those places in the world.
1:35 am
file it should not be even close. everything that is necessary for the most innovative country in the world the most creative place in the world though labor laws there you begin the developed world. all of this side is cast aside momentarily like we are france. i don't want to be disrespectful there's a lot of interesting things but the crisis of opportunity is we're not aspiring to be young and dynamic. if we fixed the substantive things we could be americans again.
1:36 am
>>guest: them in order of importance? [laughter] and energy policy based on innovation and all-american resources. all in. we should be energy secure with mexico and canada and the united states within five years. our regulatory system based on the 21st century economy putting old complicated rules creating more complexity. we have lost monnet dynamic and dash our dynamic nature. could you do what you have done starting over now?
1:37 am
people would admit with those barriers in the 21st entryway is a great challenge and to simplify the tax code and how the investments take place you want a world where the albanian tax credits are like croatian and then come to america. of the most complicated tax code. is to let freedom ring. that is the third.
1:38 am
number four is immigration reform. if we would control the borders for and moved away from family reunification to be the sole driver of how people come to this country, the viper said comes through family petitions in a dramatically expanded immigrants which we have the capability to do. that is not ideological or potted - - partisans we could create a country that has the first 300,000 first-round draft picks. if you the owner of a football team? [laughter] you could be the equivalent of fred smith.
1:39 am
end it could come to create economic vitality that people have no clue or no understanding. this is an extraordinary country. and landed is it working. reform is important but transformation should be the bigger argument. so if we started to do some of those we could do the other big thing which is intended to reform. which we desperately need as well. no country has been able to do this and if we do we are young emerging again it
1:40 am
would be the first country that we are no longer bertha bric country the first time in world history that could have been and is worth aspiring to because the means by which we see rising incomes. to be pessimistic what the future looks like swimming to talk about immigration and. the reality is the roadblock to a comprehensive immigration reform in this town is your party in the house. where's the gap this and. >> you don't think when the president used his powers he may or may not have clearly
1:41 am
knows will be provocative use is that you deal that that is not provocative for deterring? >> but not now. >> i would argue there is enough play mambos sides. we have missed opportunities on our side to shift the focus away but had we shift sousa economically driven system? but there is no trust anymore for an insect -- for the executive to enforce the law. so we are stuck.
1:42 am
it is the shame because it is the easiest way to get to sustained economic growth. hopefully the republicans rather than have their head explode, i am not a lawyer i cannot say unconstitutional but may be extra constitutional they are stretched beyond by what any has been used. and not a much smarter scale between what happened back then 30 years ago. >>. >> it is the way first of all,.
1:43 am
i don't know the exact details but he did not permanently change things because he is nowhere near to that closes toward a. and then to have some of uncertainty in then to get a legal status to move to a system that is economically driven. to have spouses and minor children and minor children as a definition of family of betty else has spouses and minor children. please don't checkmate. [laughter] scott i think it is true. that is what canada has.
1:44 am
if we a emulate the cabinet -- canadian model 75 percent come for economic purposes based on economic need to. believe it or not canada is sophisticated enough to know where their shortages of labor are. what a radical innovation. i imagine we could figure that out. if we have the same system to dramatically expand the aspirational class. that people make an immediate impact on our economy we would grow at a higher sustained rate and i don't know why anyone would be opposed to that. >> tok education frankly the last several years people raise education a lot you thought about this more than
1:45 am
most where did it go off the tracks event at 10,000 feet what is the way to do give back? period we have evolved from local school districts. we're not saying to get rid of him that the monopolistic nature the politicizes unionized political nature that puts the economic interest of the adults of ink to cortexes are tennessee or florida that number one in employer is the miami-dade school system so has the focus then how to customize the learning experience.
1:46 am
it's the problem the governance model is different -- designed for adults than the children in reforming of the edges with the change that and i have lost my patience with this because i don't see the change necessary to get to the model that we can get to restarted from scratch with would not have the monopolies but something that would be child served and customized and use technology for vendors to sell computers to districts but the at the core of learning. rather than 180 days the means by which the school
1:47 am
system is funded. and now we have a weird coalition that protects the status'' for different reasons and other that how we educate kids. there is a path of bystanders but it does not end there in empowers parents to make decisions for their children in for the learning experience to be completely customize where digital learning can occur that requires a big change how we collectively bargain because god forbid if a contest is provided for
1:48 am
a student in miami. there is not a lot of people on the front lines right now >>host: but willing to engage is the common core standards in the other is testing. you have continued to argue that is part of the answer. >>, the core standards or higher standards to be honest tuesday they date to raise them, here is the deal. you know, this because you are concerned about it. one-third of the kids may be 40 percent at best our college horror career ready. we spent more per student
1:49 am
made before at the best in those results in the video before him that general dempsey talked about. that is not just because of the test also obesity and too many tattoos to be honest on the visible bodyguards for people that tried to do get into the military. it is about 35 or 40%. these are perfect numbers. nobody is marching in the streets. but the fact is it is a flurry just castoff large numbers of people saying it is family circumstances, poverty we validate this. we encourage it.
1:50 am
we make that more real. a and it is the tragedy. if you don't measure we don't care. the al a measure rented is the great way to insure it doesn't matter. that kids can be cast aside. in the former chiseler of the new york school said republicans opposed national standards even though these are not national standards as common core and democrats actually republicans oppose natural -- national and democrats oppose standards so there is a coalition who was to keep what we have even though people cannot defend the results so we have to create a new coalition perhaps more radicalized with a greater
1:51 am
sense of urgency to get to a better place. all the things that are doable will not solve the problem of the social strains with that have and have-nots because children have not gained the power of knowledge. >>host: we are gathered here at the time of a fairly significant change the way the capital will work. what do you devise the new republican majority to make their agenda? is it to do or not to reduce? but not to focus energy of things into increase the majority in the house we
1:52 am
just have to show we can govern like adults. in and it should not be too much of fall worry. but they should take the things aeropostale nay achieve with the democrats in the congress to start passing bills. there were those bills that passed the house the didn't get one hearing is a the said it. it is unprecedented. it is never aware of where democracy was shut down in the senate. now they need to go back to regular order way to encourage amendments to allow for the debate to take place to get back to where
1:53 am
we a complaint the senate is a deliberative body. literacy they would do nothing. so to show the adult center to leadership, even if it is not the huge big things to require presidential action it could be accelerating on energy or federal lands and waters or consideration of the swiss have refining capacity is to leave the permit process for the lng plans for more economic
1:54 am
energy for the jobs created in our own country to deal with the problem of russia as it relates to the blackmail potential over europe because of natural gas. there's a lot of things republicans can do. we don't need to worry about how the president reacts. he willing gauge but we need to show that we are for a bunch of things and there is a lot of stuff to be done whether the internet protocol, and that is jollity, pass protection, a tort reform, there is a lot of things they have the ability to garner 60 votes in the senate with health care reform. of not just to repeal obamacare replace it with something that is the trustee for century workforce. there should be a tie of incredible possibilities for republicans to show what
1:55 am
they believe his ineptitude term governor in chief executive dealing with legislative combinations. but the president on one hand how to do get beyond of the unsatisfactory and? >> the president has the upper he and because the presidency is occupied by one person and could change the culture almost immediately of that was his wish. it would require to suck it up of little bit. it is hard. because everything that i propose soar above the din and the republicans have frozen so i will react to that but he has the upper hand because it is one
1:56 am
person. the presidency still matters to the country so i am no expert but the leadership of the congress is on the right path base of my conversations to focus on what can be done of budget, the first time in fivers six years. that is a radical idea but pass a budget and actually go to committee to talk about the priorities to goes to the regular order way to get back to of place to have different views to sort that out for a budget is created and hopefully with less of a deficit going forward and if the president engages it helps his legacy but if he doesn't it sets the stage
1:57 am
for the 16 election that will be different from previous that republicans is the party if of a new. you cannot say if you're the party of progress if you don't take any action so it is a great opportunity for republicans to show what it looks like if conservative leadership gets back to washington. >>host: you did it. you said 2016 awry have to church in my card. what you think about yourself personally? >> 16 is like any other year. i am thinking about running for president. i will make up my mind is an short order i don't know the exact time line. that same decision making
1:58 am
process is can i do which is in a way to try to lift people's spirit said not get sucked into the for tax? is easy to say but harder to do. i have to do a lot of soul-searching to make that determination and with the sacrifice for my family is tolerable? and every person their runs for office it is of big sacrifice because it is an ugly business. but there is no level under which i would never subjugate my family because that is when organizing principle and my life. and i think people appreciate that. i am sorting that out. item number five with good or bad candidate but, no how a republican than when weather me or somebody else
1:59 am
in the past to be much more uplifting, positive, willing to be practical now or you lose the primary to win the general without violating principles. not in easy task. >>host: question that has reverberated through the last couple dominating cycles. are the things that you need to do contrary to what you do to win the general election? >> frankly no one knows that because it has now been tried recently. [laughter] layperson opinion is nit romney would have been and would be a great president right now. he is a problem solver his life experience was designed here is a problem let's fix it and put aside that ideological differences and forge consensus around this
2:00 am
is the problem. how do we fix it. i can imagine a lot of power point presentations. [laughter] that would be healthy right now because our government is not working in a 21st century way. . .
2:01 am
2:02 am
2:03 am
2:04 am
2:05 am
2:06 am
2:07 am
2:08 am
2:09 am
2:10 am
2:11 am
2:12 am
2:13 am
2:14 am
2:15 am
2:16 am
2:17 am
[inaudible conversations] >> i want to welcome everyone to our hearing today for commerce manufacturing and trade subcommittee. i think this is our last hearing of this congressional session assuming no emergency for next week. so, next year mr. burgess as i
2:18 am
understand it's going to take over the gavel for this committee and so even though he is not currently a member of the subcommittee he is joining us today to kind of get a feel for the importance of this subcommittee and certainly the importance of this hearing tod today. so the title of this hearing is the qaeda airbag ruptures and recalls. safety recalls are often marked by tragedy. that's what brings it to our attention that there are even more troubling when the very equipment being recalled is intended to save lives. this morning we will begin piecing together the history of a safety defect that became known only by what appeared to us as fits and starts and seemingly has several potential
2:19 am
causes. the first known rupture occurred in 2004 in alabama. three more ruptures in 2007 lead takata to identify it bad stamp press at a facility in washington june 2800 recalled 3940 cars in the u.s. however to more airbags ruptured in may and june of 2091 of which killed a driver. at that point it appeared to takata believe that airbag inflators were being improperly exposed to moisture during the production process. however around the same time to takata confirmed that the stamp press was to blame for the at-risk airbags in early 2011 uncertainty about the cause of the continuing ruptures led to another recalled. previous recalls were expanded in 2012 upon the discovery that
2:20 am
takata's production records were in disarray. nhtsa, takata and car manufacturers all indicate that the vehicles with faulty airbags tied to manufacturing issues have been recalled and get several more ruptured -- ruptures occurred as seven states. this led manufactures to believe that prolonged exposure to high absolute humidity levels was a major contributing factor. however nhtsa recently demanded that manufactures broadened the current recalls in southern states to the national level. nhtsa believes that the recent incidents in california and north carolina indicate the possibility of ruptures in and areas with lower absolute humidity. i understand takata disagrees with that says assessment i look forward to learning more about that. while the oam that are before us
2:21 am
today have all stated publicly that they are willing to do a national recall. now there are several questions here to address. for example are the current tesw much testing is adequate enough and what is the appropriate level of coordination between nhtsa automakers and their suppliers, what metrics should be used to determine whether recall is necessary? there are also questions about this up supply of replacement parts and whether those replacement parts are truly safer than the parts being recalled. our highway safety depends on the vigilance of manufactures as well as nhtsa. sometimes the regulators and the best position to look at the defect and sometimes it's a manufacture. the time is come to bring the facts together and make sure the
2:22 am
unsaved airbag inflators are off the market. consumers can get their faulty parts replaced and the future recalls are handled better. the safety of american drivers depend on our collective success so i think the witnesses for being here today and to help achieve these goals and put a stop to this deadly problem. there is one minute left. would you like to claim that? >> yes, thank you mr. chairman. thank you and i thank her witnesses also for being here and as the chairman said 2004 is the first time we knew of this issue. it it was when the first inflator exploded and then we go through the process of looking at their propellant change in finding out when the change was made to nitrate and no one. we do hope this hearing is going to give us an opportunity to talk with you about the
2:23 am
decision-making process. who was involved in that, when they made the decisions that they did. we will drill down on that. we are very disappointed in takata refusing to work with nhtsa on the deadline for a national recall of the driver-side airbags that expired last night. we want to address that with you. we welcome our witnesses and i am finishing right on time mr. chairman. back to you. >> well done. now the chair making -- recognizes the ranking member from illinois for five minutes. >> they mr. chairman are holding this important hearing today. before i turn to today's business i would like to thank the ranking member waxman for his decade of leadership and to serve as chairman and ranking member of this committee. he will leave an indelible legacy of achievement when he retires at the end of this year and i am so proud to have
2:24 am
learned from and worked with him on so many issues of great importance to the american people. mr. chairman i would also like to recognize you for your eight terms in the house representing the people of nebraska and i've enjoyed working with you during your chairmanship on the subcommittee over the past few years. i wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors. i am deeply saddened that we are here again today to discuss this but i'm determined to understand what exactly happened to respond in a time that improves driver and passenger safety. in 2004 driver in alabama was killed by shrapnel and jacket from at the qaeda airbag. they recall that expanded over the next five years and was originate to find the root cause of similar and asked takata to order a national recall and yesterday the company rejected
2:25 am
the request. media reports suggest the takata honda knew about the seriousness risks its airbags imposed on drivers and passengers as early as 10 years ago. actions have been taken to address the cause we wouldn't be here today. because takata refused to nhtsa's request for recall atta manufactures his customers are driving vehicles equipped with airbags that could be deadly now have to determine whether they will be -- airbags are thereon. i have received letters from constituents are literally afraid to drive their cars and this is unacceptable. i want to know why takata has been so slow in responding to this deadly defect and why he believes a national recall is not warranted. i want to know what takata and auto companies plan to do an
2:26 am
immediate future to protect their customers. i want to know what more nhtsa needs to do in order to prevent problems like this from continuing in the future and i want to know since the cause of the airbag rusher still not certain whether replacement of these potentially dangerous airbags with similar products actually eliminates the risk of airbag explosions in the future. i look forward to her witnesses answers to these questions and more. incredibly slow response to the problem is just the latest reminder that we need stronger laws to protect drivers and passengers had to hold manufactures accountable for the cars they sell. earlier this year i introduced h.r. 5654 the vehicle safety information act. legislation to improve auto safety and efficacy and efficiency of recalls. that bill would expand and clarify the information
2:27 am
manufacturers must provide about defects in fatal incidents, increase information about auto defects that nets him a share with the public, increase financial penalties and remove the statutory maximum penalty for manufactures that violate nhtsa reporting requirements, provide an imminent hazard authority so nhtsa can expedite recalls a potentially deadly cars, limit the resale of cars with a serious defect unless the problem has been fixed or the buyer has been notified and regional recalls. i urge the chairman to bring this bill up for consideration in the subcommittee were to ask house leadership to put it on the suspension calendar without delay. and with that i yield back the balance of my time. >> the chair now recognizes full committee chair mr. upton. >> thank you mr. chairman and i appreciate your leadership over the last number of years and also mr. waxman and at one point
2:28 am
we will have a recognition of both ears of your service. i am sorry to say it's been a bad year for auto safety. the latest danger for drivers now -- malfunctioning air bags that can shoot shrapnel who dared make a bad accident even worse. drivers are being told that their vehicle is subject to recall that there are not enough parts to fi fix it and if they o get a replacement that airbag may be subject to the same safety failure in the future because we still don't know if the root problem has been addressed. there are still lots of questions surrounding these airbag defects and recalls and today we all want some answers. the american people deserve to have confidence that the cars they drive are safe and the industry and the government are doing everything they can do to improve safety. the first question that has to be determined is whether or not
2:29 am
the design flaw for an airbag or manufacturing issue. until that question is answered you are not going to be able to resolve the issue. unfortunately deadly auto defects and massive recalls are not new subjects. i've listened to embed multiple recall hearings drinking from the ford firestone crisis to the two toyota format problem to the gm ignition switch debacle earlier this year. over a decade ago i offered bipartisan tread act to help catch and then fix defects in her and avoid the kind of disaster we are facing today yet here we are again. the tread act was very simple. requiring manufacturers to report the information needed to help nhtsa quickly identify vehicle defects and remove flawed cars from the road right away. our goal is to prevent injuries and save lives but we need industry and nhtsa to do their part.
2:30 am
cars are safer today but not because the company hires lawyers and consultants to avoid reporting safety incidents. i'm going to ask the tough questions regarding what we have read and heard about honda manipulating the system to report as little as possible. companies need to know that there isn't anything safe about shorting safety. we need more automakers to make safety a priority in institute safety incentives. in the case of gm they acknowledge their safety failure. their ceo volunteered to testify and they hired a new safety officer to implement companywide culture changes. would like to see that same level of urgency, that same admission of mistakes and that same commitment to do better today. complex safety technology can lead to complex problems and the takata airbag issues are in the complex. there were manufacturing issues and they were handling issues and as soon as one problem is identified it seemed like another spring up, sort of like
2:31 am
whack-a-mole. now are we are waiting to find out if humanity is the sure there are other manufacturing concerns. in the meantime testing is slow and we are short on replacement parts. what is worth knowing can say for sure that the replacement parts are any safer than the originals. they may be right back after the replacement parts have reached their humanity half-life. complexity is not an excuse for incompetence failing to make sure the companies and regulators can keep pace with innovation. we need a regulatory agency that breeds confidence and offer solutions, not one that is part of the problem. further witnesses i pose this question. what should i say to the mom in michigan who asked me if she and her family are safe behind the wheel? families across the country expect the safety devices in their vehicles to work. they expect them to provide lifesaving protection that they
2:32 am
can count on in the event of an accident and they expect the problems from earlier models be reported and fixed and they expect to be able to get a defect repaired when i find out about it. sadly i don't think i can give that assurance right now. one thing is for sure we have a lot of issues to resolve and i want to thank chairman teri for starting the process i want to thank them from the bottom of my hard for his services as a leader of the subcommittee and wish them well in the future and i yield back my time. >> thank you mr. chairman. that's much appreciated and now it's time to introduce our panel. i'm sorry. i'm getting ahead of myself. you are recognized for five minutes. >> thank you mr. chairman. neither you nor i have -- which we will do the end of this year and i think my colleague ms. schakowsky for kind words. here is what we know so far
2:33 am
about the takata airbag recalls. we know that there is then a series of airbag recalls affecting millions of vehicles dating back to 2008 and we know that at least five people are dead and dozens have been injured by these defective airbags. there are questions about the takata airbag that we -- remain unanswered. we do not know exactly what takata and auto manufacturers knew about these defective airbags and when they knew it. we do not know and it appears the national highway safety traffic administration, takata in the auto manufactures do not know either the root cause of all these exploding airbags. we have questioned whether the replacement airplay -- airbag with letters or say. documents reveal new questions? this safety administration known as nhtsa recently requested a national recall of all defective
2:34 am
airbags on the driver side of the car but has limited its action to regional recalls of passenger side airbags. the data we have received is raising new questions about the safety of passenger safety airbag in the scope of recalls. takata has tested over 2500 driver and passenger side airbags for ruptures. none of the driver side airbags ruptured in these tests. but takata has observed over 60 passenger side airbag ruptures. given these testing results we need to understand what nhtsa has requested a broader recall for driver side airbags but has not made the same request for passenger side airbags. mr. chairman i have some documents that i have referred to showing these test results
2:35 am
and i would ask unanimous consent to put them into the hearing record. >> without objection. >> we need to find answers to these questions about and i hope the committee will continue its investigation even after the time you and i mr. chairman will be gone but we know enough now to begin our legislative work. mr. chairman last april i joined representatives schakowsky to introduce h.r. 4360 for the motor vehicle safety act of 20 2014. there are many important provisions in this legislation that would address problems that the committee found in our investigations of takata's exploding airbags in the gma commissioned switch failure. in both cases auto manufactures and auto parts manufacturers fail to provide key information to the federal agency in a timely fashion. we learned last week of another major auto safety failure. for over a decade honda failed
2:36 am
to report to nhtsa more than 1700 claims of injuries or deaths caused by accidents in its vehicles. our legislation improves early warning reporting system by baking more reporting information public and ensuring that nhtsa receives significantly more information from manufactures on any fatal incident involving a safety defect. additional data and greater transparency will help nhtsa identify deadly safety defects sooner. in both the gm and takata cases nhtsa has been criticized for failing to recognize and act quickly about the evidence mounting a deadly auto defects. our bill provides more resources to give them the additional enforcement authority and increases the fines from manufactures that violate safe safety, vehicle safety laws.
2:37 am
mr. chairman today we will learn other needed fixes to the current system. i think our legislation is a good place to start the live a short time left i would like to yield to the gentleman. >> thank you very much. the two concerns i have an eye-opener addressing this. one is public safety. obviously automobiles are extremely important but can be dangerous with the defect. number two public confidence. when a serious incident happens that threatens at life it creates public insecurity among the driving public and obviously my use of burden have to be on the manufacturer and a governmental agencies to take the appropriate steps to revive public confidence. thank you. >> thank you. now is the appropriate time to deduce the panel. i will introduce the panel as a whole and then we will start
2:38 am
with takata is the for speeding witness. today our first panel representing takata is hiroshi shimizu from honda, rick schostek from bmw, chris westbrook from toyota, albaugh saadat. i appreciate all of you being here. we will go from right, my left to your right and start with mr. shimizu but before i ask you to start i want to recognize that you are at. with a translator because english is not mr. shimizu's first language and while the committee will allow mr. shimizu to confer for the -- with a translator for the purpose of clarification you will be
2:39 am
required to answer the committee's question in his own voice and enablers. we have already discuss that and i appreciate your acceptance of that. so mr. shimizu you are now recognized for five minutes. >> thank you. chairman and ranking member schakowsky and distinguished members of the subcommittee i am honored to be here on behalf of takata corporation. mr. chairman takata is dedicated to making products that save lives. millions of takata airbags have inflated properly preventing thousands of death and avoiding serious injury in hundreds of thousands of accidents around the world. but any failure of even one airbag in an automobile accident
2:40 am
is incompatible with takata's mission. all of us at takata now that they airbag failure ruptures have been the subject of recent recalls and issues of public safety. we are deeply sorry about each case. takata's airbag is not performed as designed and drivers have suffered auto injuries or deaths. takata is working closely with automakers and nhtsa to support the ongoing recalls and to address the problems. we are increasing our production to fulfill the automaker's orders. we are also devoting extensive efforts and attention to answering the request for information about nhtsa.
2:41 am
we are committed to being fully transparent with the government. our one important function is to test and analyze. in the past several months we have tested thousands in our michigan facilities and we are increasing our testing capacity. we share all of these testing results with the automakers and nhtsa. based on our best judgment takata continues to believe that the public safety is an area of high absolute humidity remains a problem. but, make no mistake we will
2:42 am
take all actions necessary to address the role of safety for the driving public including working to produce additional replacement to support any further recalls that may be announced by the automakers. takata is also prepared to -- with other auto producers. we are confident that the inflators we are producing today are safe because we have confidence in our integrity in our manufacturing facilities in our states and around the world. we believe that properly manufactured and installed the inflators we are producing today will work as designed to save
2:43 am
lives for the expected life of the automobiles. to provide added assurance to the public and the automakers takata is forming an independent panel to prepare an independent report regarding our current manufacturing policies for the production of safe inflators including -- the report will be made public. thank you mr. chairman. >> thank you. now, the gentleman from honda mr. schostek you are recognized for your five minutes. >> mr. chairman ranking member schakowsky and members of the subcommittee thank you for this opportunity to testify. my name is rick schostek. i'm executive vice president upon the north america.
2:44 am
i want to begin by expressing our deepest sympathies to those individuals and families who have been affected by these tragic incidents. we offer our sincere apologies to the families of those who have died, who have been injured or who have been in any way inconvenienced due to the defects in the takata airbags in our vehicles. airbags save thousands of lives each year but we recognize that even one customer who is injured or loses their life when an airbag does not perform as intended is one too many and it is completely unacceptable. on november 17, nhtsa called for a nationwide recall of the driver airbag inflators that have been included in the regional safety improvement campaign undertaken in four states and territories with consistently high absolute
2:45 am
humidity. we understand that takata has not identified or knowledge to any defect of the driver airbag inflators. thus far takata has not announced plans to follow nhtsa's request for a national recall. we want to inform you that honda is going to expand our existing regional safety improvement campaign on affected driver airbag inflators to a national campaign. why are we doing this? because our customers have concerns and we want to address them. we believe this expansion and acceleration of current action. we believe there will be a part shortage that may occur despite takata's desire to increase inflators. to further increase the part supply we have been in discussions with takata and two
2:46 am
other suppliers about expanding the production of replacement or inflators. these talks have been encouraging and we believe will ultimately reduce the duration of any shortage. however until those parts are available we will continue to discuss with nhtsa and takata how to best manage the supply issue. based on information from them we believe it is best to prioritize the replacement driver airbag inflators and what are considered to be the highest risk areas in the country. in addition honda believes all stakeholders would benefit from expert third-party testing of takata airbag inflators that was announced yesterday is an industrywide program. by coming together is as an industry and sharing information and testin testing and with taks
2:47 am
continued cooperation we believe we can achieve greater results more quickly. let me briefly summarize how we got to this point. between 2008 and 12,014 honda has conducted seven national recalls related to specific takata manufacturing defects. since june of 2014 honda along with other automakers has been supporting nhtsa's request to conduct regional safety improvement campaigns in states and territories with high absolute humidity. we understand the urgency of the current situation and we have been taking proactive steps to address the needs of our customers. in addition to the required first-class mail notification we have made hundreds of thousands of phonecalls, use overnight mail delivery and routinely sent
2:48 am
letters in english and spanish. we have also hired a search firm to help us locate hard-to-find customers in some circumstances. and importantly for customers whose vehicles cannot be immediately repaired honda has instructed our dealers to provide loaner or rental cars at no cost to the customer. to summarize, we are going to expand the safety improvement campaign on effective driver airbag inflators nationwide prioritizing the high-risk areas. we are working with ball to pull suppliers to increase parts availability and we are participating in the joint industry research effort. our entire company is operating with the greatest energy and focus to quickly address our customers needs and concerns. in the days ahead with every action of our company we are dedicating ourselves to honor their relationships we have with our customers.
2:49 am
thank you. >> thank you and now mr. westbrook you are now recognized for five minutes. >> thank you ranking member schakowsky members of the subcommittee. thank you chairman terry ranking member schakowsky and members of the subcommittee for your invitation to participate in today's hearing. my name is craig westbrook vice president bmw north america. i'm her on behalf of our company representing the 70,000 people who have jobs provided and supported by the bmw group in the united states. in total the bmw group's presence is represented in 48 states. this includes our north american headquarters in new jersey, financial services in ohio under manufacturing facility in spartan south carolina just to name a few locations. in fact b&w groups in south carolina's production site is the largest single exporter of
2:50 am
vehicles by value in united states of america. the bmw group has been in the united states for nearly four decades. we have worked hard to become part of the fabric of the community in which we are present. central to our investment and in command to united states has been a focus on earning a reputation for delivering on our word and building trust with customers and communities alike. vehicle safety is fundamental to the bmw group. because of this i highly appreciate the opportunity to appear today before the subcommittee. i will share brief timeline of the activities related to takata airbag recalls that in may of 2013 after takata informed bmw north america production autos with certain inflators we initiated a voluntary national safety recall. this involved a passenger for an airbag on approximately 42,000 model year 2000 to 2003 bmw
2:51 am
vehicles. in may of 2014 this event -- we met with takata to discuss issues on airbag inflators. in mid-june it's opened a preliminary evaluation in an unprecedented approach to determine the root cause to the potential safety risk. nhtsa held a conference call with all affected automakers. during this call our makers were asked for their support to conduct a voluntary part collection campaign in specific high humidity regions. bmw north america probably agree to participate in this campaign. in july of 2014 out of an abundance of caution bmw north america expanded its voluntary campaign in previous 2013 recall a passenger front airbag. on july 15, 2014 bmw north america notified nhtsa of a voluntary nationwide recall of governor so 574,000 vehicles. the next day july 16, 2014 bmw
2:52 am
dealers were notified. standard practice for notifying customers about the company preparing the draft customer notification letter for nhtsa's or bp enlace to august that separate their letter. bmw of north america mailed modification letters to our customers in mid-september by first-class mail as required by nhtsa regulation. another way customers are informed of recalls his other dealerships. when a customer visits a dealership for service adviser every bmw dealer conducts an inquiry for outstanding recalls. what's an invite if applicable customers are informed that their vehicle is subject to recall. for repairs are taking care from the spot or an implant is scheduled as soon as possible. we have made a recall information available in a consumer site bmw additionally the information is also available on the nhtsa site
2:53 am
www.safer on either side customers have the ability jackson's recall information by entering their vin. we issued a press release regarding the recalls by bmw. this nationwide recall affects approximately 660,000 model year 2,002,0063 series vehicles. nhtsa estimates over 7.8 million vehicles industrywide are affected by the takata recall in the united states. bmw of north america is also currently conducting a voluntary regional part collection campaign in certain states. this campaign affects drivers front airbag on approximately 11,600 model year 2042 bottelier 2006 bmw series vehicles. we have significantly increased their loaner fleet to provide any bmw customer needs a loaner, rental vehicle or altered into
2:54 am
transportation of the customers wish that i can assure the subcommittee that bmw of north america will continue working with nhtsa and takata on these issues. we will remain vigilant in identifying safety issues and proactive in addressing them. thank you for your time and attention. >> thank you mr. westbrook and now mr. saadat are recognized for your five minutes. >> chairman terry and ranking member schakowsky thank you for inviting me today. my name is a boss saadat and unoriginal product safety executive under vice president of north america graham senior executive united states responsible for toyota interaction with nhtsa and oversight responsibility for field action in the u.s. regarding takata airbag recalls that an engineer by training and
2:55 am
function. first, toyota shares her goals of helping build effects by these recalls and keeping them safe. we are committed to resolve this issue for customers as quickly, conveniently and safely as possible. we believe the actions we have taken reflect this commitment. from the beginning toilet has responded to defect information from takata coordinator with nhtsa and supported takata and that's an ongoing investigation. in april 2013 toyota launched a nationwide recall for front passenger airbag inflators. this recall is still in effect today. in june of this year the remedy for the recall was to replace all affected takata inflators. the industry was among the first models to recover testing by takata. in october's takata provided ted
2:56 am
nhtsa to suggest the safety risk was highest in the areas of high as areas of highest absolute unity. in response we intensified her for two content customers nationwide. throughout these recalls we have worked with customers to get them information they need. beyond our national national -- we had mailed more than 3000 notification letters to know no owners and the disc made humid region. we also have it easier for customers to find recall information on toyota's web site. in addition we have started the second day customer outreach program in humid areas that include telephone calls, e-mails and direct mail and we are staffing or call centers to handle any increase in takata inquiries. at the same time we are working to replace the parts of toyota dealers in this effort is going well in humid regions.
2:57 am
if parts are unavailable we have empowered dealers to meet our customers needs and minimize their inconvenience. for example dealers are able to front passenger airbags and fix the prominent label but once again seizing the seat until a replacement inflators installed. dealers are also making loaner vehicles available and telling affected vehicles for customers if necessary. to this point the faster we get replacement parts for faster we can fix our customers vehicles. takata estimates of supply will increase significantly starting this month. like you who you want show the assurances of the type that -- quality. particularly in the light of previous experiences. for instance in 2010 toyota recalled the takata plater in japan to address a different manufacturing problem not
2:58 am
involving u.s. vehicles. in terms of testing we have conducted and continue continued to conduct testing on takata inflators and we have inspected takata production facilities. additionally we have retained an independent engineering firm to evaluate affected takata inflators and replacement parts. separately toyota is inviting all affected automakers to participate in joint industrywide initiative to conduct an independent testing of takata air inflators. toyota addressed the recent general order and ongoing dedications with the agency. again are nationwide recall remains in effect and we plan to replace all involves inflators as parts become available. in closing toyota is taking this issue very seriously. we will continue to respond promptly and do what's best for our customers.
2:59 am
thank you and i'm happy to answer your questions. >> thank you mr. saadat. at this time we are in the question-and-answer period and i have the opportunity to ask the first question. mr. shimizu, following nhtsa's june i think it was 19th, 2014 request by takata and 10 vehicle manufacturers to participate in a regional field action how many passengers, side and driver side airbag inflators have been tested to this date so june 142 today? >> to my knowledge up to today we have spent around 4000 pieces. >> the 4000 tests, are they evenly divided between passenger
3:00 am
and driver's side? >> i think for the driver side i believe they are are around 400. >> 400. so 3600 of the tests were on the passenger side. out of the 3600 on the passenger side airbags how many ruptures have occurred? >> i don't have an accurate number but i believe that it's less than 60. >> less than 60. okay. how about on the driver side of the 400 vehicles tested? >> zero at this moment. >> zero. how many tests are you doing
3:01 am
currently per day? > currently we are testing about -- 100 apiece per day. >> 100-watt? >> 100 apiece per day. >> is that about passenger? >> is sometimes passenger-side and sometimes the driver side. it depends on the inflator that we collected from the vehicle. >> very good. with your continued stands on opposing a national recall, what about takata's test results will lead to believe the national recall of all driver side air bags is not needed or appropriate? >> based on the data we are collecting from the region and
3:02 am
other regions the vendor supports that we should remain focused on the region with heights temperature and high humidity. >> okay. the crashes and california and north carolina led nhtsa to believe the takata inflators were at risk outside of the state with absolute high humidity so why do you disagree with this conclusion here? >> let me state from my opening statement we are not opposing nhtsa's direction. we are committed to take any action leading to auto safety for the public. that also includes producing additional replacement kits to
3:03 am
supplement their recall effort by automakers. once automakers decided to expand recall of vehicles we supported. i want to explain that we did investigations but they are not completed yet. and regarding the event in north carolina at this time we have had no chance to check the vehicles. we only have the production serial number information in the pictures so we will inspect the vehicles later and sent to the
3:04 am
automakers and takata. >> i only have 28 and slept so i yield back my temin recognize break and member from illinois for five minutes. >> thank you mr. chairman. mr. shimizu, am i saying it correctly? >> yes. >> and they let her takata said to nhtsa yesterday the company rejected a national recall. your director of public safety wrote that "back under the nhtsa statute only manufactures of motor vehicles of replacement vehicles are required to decide in good whether their products contained a safety related defect and if so to conduct a recalled unquote. mr. chairman i would like to submit this letter for the record. >> without objection, so ordered. >> mr. shimizu let me ask you, do you agree with the conclusion in a letter sent by a company yesterday? >> yes. >> mr. shimizu do you agree that takata is not required to deciding good faith whether your products contain a safety related defect?
3:05 am
>> congresswoman i agree with that statement based on the data we have and that would support their recall at the moment. >> so are you telling us that your company has no legal responsibility to determine if airbags are defective into recall them? >> our products are defective supported by scientific data, we are responsible for it. >> so you believe that you are responsible for that if they are found to be defective but it's up to you to decide that? >> yes. our products involved -- so once
3:06 am
we decided its detective, yes. >> moving forward takata will be producing millions of replacement airbags. are the replacement airbags that you are having installed as a result of the recall safe? >> yes. it's true we have issued this in the past and i did find the root cause -- cause an address this. our product including the replacement kits we are replacing in the manufacturing processes. >> you have in fact discover the root cause of the ruptures? >> excuse me? >> are you sure that an certain that you have discovered, takata has discovered the root cause of the airbag ruptures? >> yes.
3:07 am
we found the root cause of the issues in the products we did the recall in the past however we continue investigations for the issues that happened in the area with a high humidity and high temperatures. we need to continue to investigate from these regions. >> are you saying it's only in high humidity areas that this is a problem, that is the root cause? >> we consider it a main contribution to the problem, the high temperature and high humidity and absolute humidity together with the age of the products and that is why we support nhtsa and continue to
3:08 am
analyze the inflators. >> who is the highest-ranking takata official that is signed off on production of airbags that are now being recall the? the ones that are being recalled, who is the highest-ranking official that is actually signed off on that? >> the statement from the company i signed. >> you sign. who is the highest-ranking official with oversight of this production approval process? >> the head of operations and also -- [inaudible] >> let me just ask each of the manufactures and one more question for you mr. shimizu. have any of these individuals including yourself been held accountable for these decisions? >> can i ask my interpreter?
3:09 am
>> yes. have there have been consequences? >> where more focused on correcting the problem and we are not addressing that area yet. >> quickly can i ask, yes or no. our toyota, honda and bmw cars on the road right now, both passenger and driver airbags save? would you tell your children and spouses there is no danger of this type of rupture to keep on driving? mr. schostek. >> congresswoman we want our customers to be safe and feel safe in our cars. as you have for their national recalls in effect. what we want our customers to do is to first understand whether their car is subject to recall. they can do that either by
3:10 am
checking a web site or calling us were visiting their local dealer and finding out if they are subject to recall that if they are what want that car and we want to replace that part. they there are also good to recall we believe they are safe in those cars. >> mr. westbrook. >> yes. >> mr. saadat? >> please keep in mind food recalls inflators are all passenger side, not driver side. it is want to make that clear for two to recalls. >> how do you know back? all the deaths were on the driver-side? all the deaths, not necessarily toyota. >> the gentlelady's time has expired. the chair now recognizes the full committee chair mr. upton. >> thank you mr. chairman and i want to go back to my opening statement. this committee has been very involved in auto safety and rightly so for a lot of years. as i can remember rolling a
3:11 am
flawed tire down this dais 10 years ago really seeking action and we did it. we worked at the end of the session. we significantly raise the fines and we added criminal sanctions for violations. jail. it was tough to go through but we got it done. i want to say it was certainly bipartisan and it was pretty close to unanimous in terms of what we did. and what that tried acts did was really force the manufactures to share details with a regulator to make sure that consumers, us, got the information and felt safe behind the wheel. there is a report that came out this morning. i have not read it, just
3:12 am
literally within the last half-hour or so, but it says reuters, reuters is reporting today that takata ran an investigation into an airbag inflated that ruptured in a bmw as early as 2003 and additionald defects was done in 2004, 10 years ago. that was the time when we were passing the tread act. both of these revelations would indicate that takata was investigating this hazard well before has been previously disclosed. can you comment mr. shimizu on the 2003 in 2004 investigations? are they related to the current recall? >> congressman might answer is no. >> you may use the mic.
3:13 am
>> excuse me can you hear me now. my answer is no. regarding the bmw in 2003 to my knowledge it happened in europe and the cause of the problem is not an inflator issue we are talking about right now. that was a manufacturing issue so it's not the same as the problems we are discussing right now. >> so they are not related as what you are saying? >> they are not related to the current issues. >> so do you know whether the issue today is manufacturing related or is a design flaw in the inflator itself? do you know the answer that question?
3:14 am
>> yes or no? >> to my knowledge the current issue is most likely manufacturing. >> it is not manufacturing related. >> it is. >> it is manufacturing related. thank you. mr. schostek in 2011 a honda associate recognize an issue related to the recording of a verbal code in the legal file management system that could have affected the accuracy of the early warning report and additionally in 2012 nhtsa made honda over that it was under reporting. why didn't honda follow up with the issue in 2011 and why didn't honda take inclusive action in 2012? >> chairman upton thank you very much for that question and i understand your involvement in
3:15 am
the establishment of the tread act and i can understand the discipline me feel by the shortcomings affected by her company and want to explain you what happened. the problem we had was under reporting in the tread act as a systematic problem that began at the outset of the tread act. as you know went into effect in 2003. our staff at the time did not properly programmed computers and set up systems that would agri- let data flow and feed into tread reports. it is difficult for me to say sir but that setup continued unchecked until 2011, 2012. you are right that an internal honda associate did mention a concern as well as a discussion with nhtsa. they asked about the omission of certain incidents in our tread reporting. we did look into that sir in
3:16 am
early 2012. we did not look into it effectively. we found one of what we ate eventually would be known to become three problems. they took substantial action to address that one problem but sir did not complete our compliance requirements. >> can i ask for additional minute? >> without objection. >> we are going to be asking nhtsa what was nhtsa's response? do you did correct it with nhtsa, is that right? do you did fess up in essence to just -- nhtsa, red? >> in 2012 we had a problem converting oral claims into written claims. we made a counter measure internally to report those written claims. mr. chairman we did not close the loop with nhtsa and we did not act with the urgency we needed to. >> admits a come back and say what happened and was there any dialogue?
3:17 am
what was nhtsa's response? .. >> it. >> him and that is our
3:18 am
feeling. >> i yield back. >> the chair recognizes the full committee braincase member mr. waxman. >> thinks mr. chairman on november 18 to extend into regional recall driver's side air bags from nhtsa to a nationwide and on november november 26, to formally request that takata expand to a national recall that yesterday takata responded that the currently available reliable information does not support a nationwide determination of a safety defect. why does takata believe there is not enough evidence of a driver's side airbag recall?
3:19 am
>> the event for the data that we have from the driver's side so based on this data so we should stay focused on this area. and with the scientific evidence. that is the background. >> is the same thing to for the regional recall for passenger side air bags? >> as i said it comes from p.r. beyond florida.
3:20 am
>> to understand from the perspective a recall only covers cars in florida? >> for p.r. and hawaii. >> but if i have a car with the takata air bag and you live florida with the georgia line it is imperative to bring bad in but if i schedule that 50 minutes north in georgia that my car is perfectly safe? is that my assumption? >> based on the data em recollected with temperature and humidity in the 2.-- the
3:21 am at is what we focus on. that is a quite wide area. >> mr. schostek does that make sense to you? fifteen minutes north you are okay but if you are in florida you have to get a replacement? >> eidenshink it is important to distinguish looking at the mower recent regional recall i want to be sure the committee understands the recalls the reconstructed 2008 through 2014 were related to specific takata defects were
3:22 am
national. so for those recalls we believe we understand the cause of the problem, that is the manufacturing defects of takata their recall the matter where they are. but we're talking about now is 2014 through the present which is the last five months and all of us in the industry have been asked by nhtsa to gather through safety and improving campaign to gather information to bring back the insulators in the high committed these states. we included continuous counties and expanded beyond what they ask us. >> but if you are in certain areas the npt and humidity would require you to comply with a regional recall but i will ask a different question. if i lived in houston texas
3:23 am
it is slightly less humid and jacksonville so can we be certain my car would not develop the same defect tour three years later? mcfadyen is the good question we ask that ourselves of that is why we expanded the regional recall to include texas. >> deal is still not know the root cause of the air bag failures? >> congressman asking about their recalls. >> and you know, the root cause of the problem? >> get this moment we do not. we know what contributes to the problems. >> the confusing contrary
3:24 am
purely nonsensical intimation but drivers don't know if they are saved. but until this morning honda had chosen to expand its regional access to misstates and territories. then we learned it is a national recall of driver's side air bags. why did honda decided to expand in the recall to the 13 states and territories? >> we heard this morning about nhtsa request for the we have been seriously considering with the safety improvement campaign to gather more data nationally but once we understood we
3:25 am
decided to take action to take all customers on a nationwide basis but as i said we still believe that the highest risk in the highest areas that those should be prioritized with replacement parts. but we believe our customers have concerns and our job is to satisfy our customers. we want to expand a the recall through the improving campaign to conclude all areas of the country keeping a priority of the regional areas. >> the vice chair of the committee from tennessee. >> thank you, mr. chairman and for your good work on this. i think the witnesses for being willing to answer these questions because we are trying to get to the root cause. mr. waxman just mentioned
3:26 am
that term and mr. shimizu i want to go that direction with you. specifically to the november 19th, "new york times" article that tries to get a time line or chronology. but what we're doing about this and how we have got into this mess in the first place. and why. and that is covered in some parts of "the new york times" article and i would like to submit this for the record is speaks to both of our questions. >> without objection. >> thank you. mr. shimizu, a jury from the article is said by 1989 researchers in michigan from
3:27 am
takata were pressured by executives developed a propellant on that nitrates but the engineering team raised objections to base a propellant on such a risky compound. let's talk about that for a minute. i also found a takata chemical engineer said it was a question that came up ammonium nitrate propellant will that blow up? and a former senior engineer with takata, it is the basic design flaw that predispose is this propellant to break apart therefore risk catastrophic failure with the inflator. this is all before you made that decision. you made that decision anyway. to move forward with this and that is a problem for us in the american consumer.
3:28 am
and the individuals that have lost their lives or eyesight or have been hurt by this so what was the response to the concerns raised by those previously? >> congresswoman with the volume nitrate reusing in the material itself is safe. >> mr. shimizu i am sorry to interrupt. that is not the response i'm asking i know what a minute -- among nitrate is. i know what it is. i am asking you, you had to people a senior engineer and a chemical engineer that brought it to your attention that this was not a wise choice. i am asking you, sir, when
3:29 am
they brought this to your attention, what do you a and your team at takata say in response to these engineers? did you blow led off to say it doesn't matter? it cost less? to a gsa we think we can get by with this because it is an aggressive proponent? i want to know what your response was to them. >> congresswoman was not involved at that time but i do know the discussion for a new type of inflator. we questioned the chemical properties and that combustions of the materials and we decided we could control. >> mr. shimizu, let's move
3:30 am
on you are avoiding the question. when did you start to work with takata? >> 1978 civics so you were around. so you were established with his decision was made. did any other takata employees warned takata about using ammonium nitrate propellant in the year -- the air bags? yes or no? anybody else? teeeight day warn them? >> i am not aware of that. >> so you don't know if anybody else other than the two engineers warned them this was a really bad idea? you don't know that? there are concerns about using ammonium nitrate propellant yes


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on