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Contact 2: App allows motorists to check unfixed recalls

MARYLAND HEIGHTS, MO (KTVI) - 18-year-old Karina Dorado was nearly killed in a recent car crash. Flying shrapnel from an exploding Takata airbag ripped through her neck.

“The vehicle she was driving had a recalled air bag in it," said Dorado's attorney Billie-Marie Morrison.

Dorado is one of nearly 200 victims injured or killed by the faulty airbags -- airbags that are at the center of a massive worldwide recall.

“Any one of these cars can have an unfixed recall.” said CarFax representative Chris Basso.

Basso says Karina Dorado’s story underscores the importance of properly checking replacement airbags and researching potential unfixed recalls on your vehicle.

“It’s a public safety issue and as these vehicles go unfixed, it increases the threat of something disastrous happening if those recalled parts fail while the car is being driven” added Basso.

Research from CarFax indicates the St. Louis area is home to five of the top ten places in Missouri where people are most likely to have a car with unfixed recalls.

“We’ve seen a record number of recalls being issued over the last several years. That coupled with people not knowing they have a recall on their car or not prioritizing the fix has really led to this massive jump in recalls year to year.” said Basso.

Basso encourages motorists to download the free My CarFax app. It can tell you if your vehicle is under a recall and alert you to new recalls.

Armed with that information, Fox 2's Mike Colombo went to the Westport Plaza parking lot to use the app and look for vehicles with unfixed recalls. While there, he entered the license plate number for one of the vehicles into the app, it found issues the owner of the car said she wasn't aware of.

The woman told Colombo she was going to look into having the problem fixed.

“Even the recalls that seem like the smallest issue can be a major problem.” added Basso.

And when information on those issues can be the difference between life or death, why not do what you can to prevent a problem?

For more information: https://www.carfax.com/recall