Following the lead of Connecticut and New York, Ohio is the third state to make the knowing manufacture, import, installation or sale of counterfeit airbags a felony. Bill Am HB 177 was sponsored by Republican State Representative Dorothy Pelanda, backed by the Ohio Insurance Institute and the Ohio Automobile Dealers Association and signed into law by governor John Kasich.
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration is warning vehicle owners of the dangers of counterfeit airbags. During NHTSA testing, the agency discovered fake components that could fail in a spectacular manner, either by not deploying during an accident or by launching hot shrapnel into the driver's face and hands. Currently, the government agency says it is unaware of how large the counterfeit airbag problem could be.