Supplier FAQs

These questions and answers have been published to assist suppliers in complying with their obligations under the compulsory Takata airbag recall notice.

About the Recall Notice

When should I notify the ACCC that I am recalling vehicles under the Recall Notice?

When suppliers are preparing to take steps to contact consumers to commence airbag replacement they should submit a recall notification on the Product Safety Australia website. This process will generate a PRA number, the recall will be published on the Recalls page, and the previous 'future' recalls will be moved to the 'active' Takata airbag recalls list.

Where a supplier extends an existing active recall, in addition to notifying ACCC Recalls, it should also provide an updated VIN list that includes all previously recalled and additional vehicles. This information should also be provided to takatarecall@accc.gov.au specifying which vehicles from the future recalls list should now be on the active recalls list.

When is a vehicle supplied under the Recall Notice?

Under the compulsory recall, a vehicle is considered supplied or resupplied by a business when it is sold, leased or hired. This includes vehicles hired through a hire-purchase arrangement or an arrangement where a consumer purchases or obtains ownership of the vehicle at the end of a lease arrangement.

Active, future and critical recalls

How can I make changes to the future Takata airbag recalls list?

To make changes to the future Takata airbag recalls list, please contact takatarecall@accc.gov.au

How can I make changes to the active Takata airbag recalls list?

If suppliers become aware of any vehicles included on the active Takata airbag recalls list where a recall has not yet been initiated (that is, consumers are not being contacted) please notify us at takatarecall@accc.gov.au.

Why is it important to know whether a vehicle is under 'active' or 'future' recall?

The distinction between ‘active’ and ‘future’ recall is important as this status affects whether or not the vehicle can be supplied.

When is a vehicle under ‘active recall'?

A vehicle is under ‘active recall’ when a supplier has taken steps to contact consumers to commence the replacement of the defective airbag.

A vehicle is no longer under ‘active recall’ when the airbag has been replaced. It may be under active recall again if further recall action is necessary in the future, for example when the vehicle is fitted with a ‘like-for-like’ replacement. When the supplier takes steps to contact consumers again to replace a ‘like-for-like’ replacement, it will again be under ‘active’ recall.

When is a vehicle under ‘future recall’?

A vehicle is under ‘future recall’ when a supplier has stated that the vehicle will be recalled in the future and the supplier has not contacted consumers to organise a replacement airbag.

All vehicles that are subject to future recall should be contained in the supplier’s Recall Initiation Schedule and these details published on the Future Takata airbag recalls list.

When is a vehicle under ‘critical recall’?

Suppliers are required to identify and advise consumers if they have a vehicle that is fitted with an ATAI which poses a heightened safety risk of injury or death and should not be driven, and it is critical that replacement occurs immediately. The critical recall category applies to vehicles with alpha airbags and other ATAIs specified by the supplier. Suppliers should conduct risk assessments on an ongoing basis, as new information comes to light and as vehicles age. A vehicle’s status might need to be upgraded to critical to respond to an updated risk assessment.

When this occurs, suppliers’ communications and management of the recall of those vehicles must change accordingly. Owners of vehicles with a critical recall status should be advised to stop driving their vehicles and immediately organise the airbag replacement. Suppliers should offer to arrange for the vehicle to be towed to the place of replacement or for a qualified technician to travel to it (or some similar arrangement) so that the vehicle need not be driven for airbag replacement.

How do I change the recall status to a critical recall?

All vehicles with an alpha inflator must be classified as a critical recall. The critical recall status is not only for vehicles with alpha airbags. Critical recall status applies to vehicles with a heightened safety risk, which require immediate replacement of airbags and should not be driven. As the supplier you have an obligation to continuously assess and manage safety risks to consumers, and you are best placed to assess whether vehicles you have supplied have a critical recall status.

As new information comes to light and as vehicles age, you may need to update the recall status of certain vehicles to critical to reflect your ongoing risk assessment. Suppliers updating a vehicle’s recall status to be classified as a critical recall should:

  • inform affected consumers directly consistent with critical alpha messaging
  • ensure immediate action is taken to replace the ATAI
  • update the recall status of the vehicle on your website’s recall database
  • provide the relevant description of the safety risk and action required by the consumer
  • provide consumers with access to towing services or a mobile technician so consumers do not have to drive the critical vehicle to have it repaired
  • consider other special arrangements such as loan cars or reimbursement for alternative transportation costs
  • report ‘Y’ in the VIN Status Report field — ‘Is the vehicle listed in your Recall Database identified as critical?’
  • notify the ACCC by email at takatarecall@accc.gov.au with details of the following:
    • PRA reference number
    • campaign number
    • vehicle makes and models
    • model year range and relevant VINs, and an amended VIN list of these vehicles if the recall PRA/Campaign still includes non-critical vehicles.

Can I repair vehicles earlier than scheduled?

Where sufficient parts are available to meet replacement schedules in accordance with priority factors, you are encouraged to bring forward repairs of affected vehicles where possible. For example, where parts become available earlier than scheduled or where a vehicle is being serviced and surplus parts are available.

You do not require permission from the ACCC to repair a vehicle prior to it being actively recalled. However, if an entire class of vehicles is being brought forward for repair, you are likely required to submit an amended Recall Initiation Schedule under the Recall Notice.

Who is responsible for ongoing risk assessments?

As suppliers, you are best placed to assess which vehicles in your fleet are to be prioritised over others, and are responsible for assessing and managing the safety risk to consumers. Suppliers should ensure they conduct a dynamic risk assessment, especially when assessing whether a vehicle should be designated (or reclassified) as critical and when assessing a request for special arrangements from a consumer. The Recall Notice places minimum obligations on suppliers. It does not prevent suppliers who, through conducting their risk assessment, determine that they require a quicker recall and, where it determines that the replacement should occur immediately, can do more for consumers in offering loan cars and other arrangements.

Do state and territory registration sanctions affect a supplier’s obligations under the Recall Notice?

A supplier’s obligations under the Recall Notice are not affected by any actions taken by state and territory registration authorities, including commencement of registration sanctions. The Recall Notice requires suppliers to continue to use best endeavours to identify vehicles with ATAIs and to seek to replace the ATAI whenever it identifies one. This obligation is ongoing, survives any ACCC confirmation of completion and extends beyond 31 December 2020 until a supplier can demonstrate with adequate evidence that it has achieved 100 per cent replacement.

Do I need to tell consumers what brand of airbag inflator I am using as a replacement?

The Recall Notice broadly requires that suppliers are transparent with affected consumers. The ACCC expects suppliers to provide information about the replacement parts being installed in affected vehicles when requested by the consumer, particularly if it would help ease their safety concerns.

What are special circumstances?

Special circumstances include (but are not limited to) situations where the consumer is:

  • elderly, infirm, or disabled
  • located more than 250 kilometres from the nearest place of replacement or
  • located on an island which does not have a dealer in the supplier’s dealer network or another qualified place of replacement authorised by the supplier.

When considering a request for special circumstances, you should have regard to:

  • priority factors such as age and location of the vehicle
  • the vehicle’s history
  • the immediate location and environment it is now being driven in, regardless of where it is registered
  • whether the vehicle can be safely and legally driven to a repair facility (e.g. if the vehicle is currently unregistered or undriveable)
  • how the vehicle is being used and frequency of use, (e.g. whether it will impact the consumer’s work in addition to private use)
  • driver capacity and circumstances that may increase the consequence of a misdeployment (e.g. consumer’s medical condition).

Providing information to consumers

What information do I need to provide consumers on my website’s recall database?

Suppliers’ websites must provide consumers with access to the supplier’s recall database that allows consumers to enter a VIN into a search field and obtain immediate information about their vehicle affected by the Takata recall. This information must include the vehicle’s model and year of manufacture, recall status, PRA number, and a description of the safety risk.

In advising affected consumers about their vehicle’s recall status the options are:

  • under active recall for replacement now
  • scheduled for future recall with the date it will be recalled in the future
  • the recall and replacement is complete
  • if applicable, is subject to a critical recall, which includes alpha airbags and other airbags you determine pose a heightened safety risk, require immediate replacement and should not be driven. A vehicle which is subject to a critical recall can be both critical and either active or complete.

Suppliers must ensure the status of all affected vehicles (including those under active and future recall) are accurately reflected in its recall database as consumers and businesses rely upon this information to ascertain the recall status of affected vehicles.

What does the Recall Initiation Schedule need to show?

The recall initiation schedule (which is approved by the ACCC) must specify a supplier’s recall initiation dates for vehicles or categories of vehicles and must prioritise recall initiation according to priority factors under the Recall Notice. If a supplier is not able to meet the approved recall initiation schedule, it must apply to the ACCC to vary the schedule and provide information and reasons in support of its application.

What should someone do if they have supplied a vehicle with an ATAI outside Australia?

The Recall Notice does not require a supplier to replace the ATAI in a vehicle which was supplied in Australia but which has subsequently been exported.

Section 5(4)(d) of the Recall Notice provides that a supplier is considered to have complied with its obligation under the Recall Notice to replace an ATAI in the vehicle, if the vehicle was exported.

Regardless, a supplier with less than 100 per cent actual replacement of ATAIs must use its best endeavours to identify vehicles with ATAIs presented to its dealer network and must seek to replace the ATAI whenever it identifies one. This obligation is ongoing, survives any ACCC confirmation of completion and extends beyond 31 December 2020 until such time as a supplier can demonstrate with adequate evidence to the ACCC that it has achieved 100 per cent actual replacement.

Where a vehicle with an ATAI has been supplied in Australia and the supplier learns that it has subsequently been exported, the ACCC encourages the supplier to contact the OEM’s agent in that country and the person to whom the vehicle was supplied (where known). If the supplier is aware of the location of the vehicle, the ACCC considers that, given the serious safety risk to persons, the supplier should be doing anything they can to remove and replace the ATAI.

What if the consumer is denying access to the Vehicle and the supplier’s communication attempts have been ignored?

We are aware of a situation in which the consumer:

  • did not have their ATAI replaced before an accident in which the airbags did not deploy and
  • denied the supplier access to the vehicle while the consumer considered their legal options, ignoring the supplier’s communication attempts.

In this situation, the supplier should continue to communicate with the consumer about replacing the ATAI. These communications may emphasise the importance of replacing the ATAI for safety reasons and urging the consumer to allow access to the vehicle.

Where the consumer advises that they do not want the ATAI replaced, the supplier may consider submitting an application that, despite repeated notifications, the consumer failed to present their vehicle for replacement. The application should include, where possible, evidence of the consumer’s written notification and their failure to present the vehicle.

The ACCC notes that the requirement to replace the ATAI is ongoing and extends beyond 31 December 2020. If a consumer presents a vehicle regarding which a section 5(3) application has been approved for replacement of the ATAI (or if the vehicles later turns up for a service at the Dealership network of the supplier) the supplier must replace the ATAI at no cost.

How many notifications are sufficient for a consumer to be considered non-responsive?

Suppliers should review their approved Communication and Engagement Plans and ensure that the notifications have been carried out in accordance with it. Suppliers are required to employ a Direct Consumer Communications Campaign across multiple channels and escalate as necessary until the supplier has complied with its obligations. “Multiple channels” may include efforts to contact Consumers by email, telephone calls and SMS/text messaging unless contact details are not available despite the Supplier making the required efforts to obtain them.

The Recall Notice does not prescribe the number of notifications required in total or for each method of communication. While the total number of communications will vary depending on the circumstances and escalation strategy set out in the Communication and Engagement Plan, the ACCC expects that suppliers, at a minimum, will communicate with consumers using multiple channels and multiple communications (where contact details are available).

By way of example, the ACCC considers that sending a total of four letters (two regular letters and two by registered post) does not satisfy the adequate evidence requirement in the absence of any further information. The type of further information necessary to assess whether that communication is adequate is readily identifiable be reference to the supplier’s CEP.  Suppliers’ CEPs generally require multiple communications using multiple channels—so to demonstrate compliance with the CEP, the supplier needs to identify the multiple communications by multiple channels (eg, that calls were made and sms messages sent), or else that despite searching for contact details as required, no other contact details were available.

What if the consumer asks the supplier to stop contacting them about the compulsory recall?

Where the consumer advises that they do not want supplier communications to continue, the supplier should retain a record of the consumer’s request (and ideally obtain confirmation in writing). The Communication and Engagement Plan must have been complied with and concurrent communications using multiple means should have been made (where contact details are known). The supplier should try to confirm that the consumer actually understands the risk and urgency, and should note this in their records and present evidence of it in a section 5(3) application on the basis that, despite repeated notifications in accordance with the supplier’s Communication and Engagement Plan, the consumer failed to present their vehicle for replacement.

The ACCC notes that the requirement to replace the ATAI is ongoing and extends beyond 31 December 2020. Should the consumer present the vehicle for ATAI replacement, the supplier must replace the ATAI at no cost. Suppliers must continue to be vigilant for affected vehicles and if a vehicle still containing an ATAI turns up in the dealership network, the supplier must seek to replace the ATAI (free of charge).

Consumer advises of economic write-off status, but has no evidence

Where the last registered owner of a vehicle informs a supplier that the vehicle is an economic write-off and has been sold to a wrecker but the consumer has no records/evidence to confirm the sale to the wrecker and cannot remember the identity of the wrecker, the supplier may obtain as evidence a record of confirmation from the consumer (preferably in writing) setting out the details and circumstances in order to make an application under section 5(4)(d) of the Recall Notice. As an alternative, the supplier may consider making an application under section 5(4)(b) of the Recall Notice provided the supplier’s Communication and Engagement Plan has been followed and the current owner cannot be contacted. Please note, however, that if the supplier is subsequently notified by a wrecker or auto-recycler that they have the ATAI/vehicle, the supplier must collect the ATAI (see section on spare parts).

Consumer advises vehicle privately sold

Where the last registered owner of a vehicle returns recall correspondence to the supplier with a note stating they sold the vehicle years ago, but have lost the paperwork and are therefore unable to advise who purchased it, the supplier may consider an application under section 5(4)(b) of the Recall Notice provided the supplier’s Communication and Engagement Plan has been followed and the current owner cannot be contacted.

What if police have impounded the consumer’s vehicle?

Suppliers have alerted the ACCC to a situation where police have impounded the consumer’s vehicle and the consumer does not know when the vehicle will be released due to their inability to pay any costs. Accordingly, police are denying access to the vehicle.

Impoundment of a vehicle does not affect obligations under the Recall Notice. A supplier must continue to seek to replace the ATAI. In this situation, the ACCC recommends:

  • maintaining contact with the consumer and organising replacement of the ATAI once the vehicle is released; or
  • obtaining written consent of the consumer to contact the police/impoundment facility to make arrangements directly with them to have a technician attend the police/impoundment facility and replace the ATAI there.

Any contact with the police/impoundment facility should include advising them of the nature of the risk and the urgency of action to minimise the risk that the vehicle may be back on the road in the future presenting risk of injury or death.

Providing information to the ACCC

When has a supplier complied with its obligations under the Recall Notice?

A supplier is taken to have complied with its obligations to replace all Affected Takata Airbag Inflators (ATAIs) under the Recall Notice when all ATAIs have been replaced or the supplier applies to the ACCC for a compliance assessment and the ACCC advises that it is satisfied that that the supplier has complied with its replacement obligations.

What if a supplier is not able to replace 100 per cent of ATAIs?

The Recall Notice recognises that in specified circumstances suppliers will not be able to replace 100 per cent of ATAIs. In these circumstances, a supplier may submit an application to the ACCC for a compliance assessment of its replacement obligations under the Recall Notice (section 5(3)(b)). A supplier may make an application at any time and may make more than one application.

See: Application for assessment of compliance with replacement obligations

What is ‘adequate evidence’ to satisfy the ACCC that a supplier has complied with its obligations in accordance with section 5(3)(b) of the Recall Notice?

The Recall Notice requires that the ACCC must be satisfied of the matters set out in section 5(4), subparagraphs (a) to (d) of the Recall Notice. To be satisfied, the ACCC must be provided with ‘adequate evidence’.

The term ‘adequate evidence’ is not defined in the Recall Notice. What is considered ‘adequate evidence’ will depend on the circumstances, which may vary from case to case.

Accordingly, the ACCC does not intend to provide an exhaustive list of what would be ‘adequate evidence.’ The table below lists types of evidence that would be likely considered adequate under each of the four situations.

The ACCC is open to considering alternative evidence on a case by case basis.

Situation/Section

Evidence

Consumer did not present the vehicle for replacement of the affected airbag despite multiple notifications (Section 1).

  • Evidence of actual multiple notifications in accordance with that supplier’s approved Communication and engagement plan and relevant escalation strategy. This may include details of the multiple notifications across multiple channels (for example, dates of letters sent by regular post and not returned, confirmation of delivery by registered post, text messages delivered successfully, emails delivered without bounce-back, social media notifications and telephone contact by customer call centres).
  • Evidence of a consumer’s notification of the supplier that the consumer does not want the airbag replaced (preferably in writing - hard copy or electronic) would be adequate evidence under this section.
  • Alternatively the ACCC is willing to assess an application under section 5(3) on the basis of a letter from the supplier on company letterhead signed by an officer of the company (within the meaning of the Corporations Act) that confirms certain information. This includes an acknowledgement of the effect of sections 137.1 and 137.2 of the Criminal Code (Cth), that giving false or misleading information is a serious offence. See: Application for assessment of compliance with replacement obligations.

The consumer could not be notified in circumstances where a supplier properly implemented an approved Communication and Engagement Plan (Section 2)

  • Evidence that the supplier properly implemented its approved communication and engagement plan and relevant escalation strategy, including multiple attempts to notify the consumer and to obtain updated contact information through channels other than NEVDIS. For example, this could include a supplier seeking contact information from NEVDIS/State and territory registration authority data and contacting the owner on multiple occasions across multiple channels, but communications are returned to the supplier.
  • Alternatively the ACCC is willing to assess an application under section 5(3) on the basis of a letter from the supplier on company letterhead signed by an officer of the company (within the meaning of the Corporations Act) that confirms certain information. This includes an acknowledgement of the effect of sections 137.1 and 137.2 of the Criminal Code (Cth), that giving false or misleading information is a serious offence. See: Application for assessment of compliance with replacement obligations.

The vehicle was not registered for at least two consecutive years with any State or Territory registration authority (Section 3)

  • A copy of NEVDIS data confirming the vehicle has not been registered for at least 2 consecutive years. The ACCC has been advised that suppliers are not permitted under the terms of their agreement with Austroads to provide NEVDIS data to the ACCC. To enable the ACCC to request NEVDIS data on your behalf please provide the following with your application:
    • the date NEVDIS data was provided to you
    • the PRA number and
    • the NEVDIS reference number (SR number)

The vehicle was scrapped (Section 4)

  • A copy of NEVDIS data confirming a vehicle is a statutory write-off (designated with an “S” in NEVDIS data) may be considered adequate evidence that a vehicle is scrapped.
  • The ACCC has been advised that suppliers are not permitted under the terms of their agreement with Austroads to provide NEVDIS data to the ACCC. To enable the ACCC to request NEVDIS data on your behalf please provide the following with your application:
    • the date NEVDIS data was provided to you
    • the PRA number and
    • the NEVDIS reference number (SR number)
  • Evidence that the vehicle is now owned by a scrap yard or wrecker (for example, record of supply to that entity, or some other records of the transaction)

The vehicle was exported (Section 4)

  • Evidence of consumer notification (preferably in writing) that the vehicle has been exported
  • A copy of NEVDIS data. The ACCC has been advised that suppliers are not permitted under the terms of their agreement with Austroads to provide NEVDIS data to the ACCC. To enable the ACCC to request NEVDIS data on your behalf please provide the following with your application:
    • the date NEVDIS data was provided to you
    • the PRA number and
    • the NEVDIS reference number (SR number)
  • A copy of state or territory registration authority data supplying an overseas address for the vehicle

The vehicle was stolen (Section 4)

  • Evidence of consumer notification (preferably in writing)
  • A copy of a police report and/or insurance claim

What about other forms of evidence?

Other types of evidence that may satisfy the ACCC may be available. For example, there may be insurance records regarding written-off vehicles, evidence from auto-recyclers or auto-wreckers concerning a vehicle or a Spare Part currently in their possession or other State and Territory registration authority records regarding affected vehicles.

If the ATAI has been destroyed or used in testing, please see below for examples of evidence that may be used to demonstrate this.

Authorised representatives

The Recall Notice provides that a supplier may meet some of its obligations under the Recall Notice through service providers authorised by the supplier (authorised representatives). The ACCC is aware of service providers that offer to locate and retrieve ATAIs in auto recycling and auto wrecker yards for a fee. The ACCC does not have a role in approving or endorsing these services. Suppliers may engage whatever ‘authorised representative' they consider appropriate and reliable to meet their obligations under the Recall Notice (see section 5(9) of the Recall Notice in this regard). In using an authorised representative, suppliers should ensure that they will be able to produce adequate evidence to account for ATAIs as part of any application to the ACCC under section 5(3) of the Recall Notice.

The ACCC is also aware of authorised representatives that issue certificates of destruction or export. In addition to a certificate, 'adequate evidence' might include:

  • evidence of sale of a vehicle to be shredded (in the form of an actual sales document, or some other reliable form of evidence)
  • a signed written statement with factual information and documentation.

A certificate issued on the basis of an unsupported assertion is unlikely to be adequate evidence of destruction.

For guidance as to what constitutes 'adequate evidence' please refer to the question above.

What will the ACCC accept as evidence of consumer notification?

Where a supplier intends to rely on notification from a consumer to support a claim, the ACCC’s preference is for this to be evidenced in writing. This includes a returned form with handwriting on it, a letter or email communication from a consumer or information to a supplier via a web form or similar.

Will the ACCC accept evidence of oral communication from a consumer?

Where a supplier does not have evidence of some type of written notification from a consumer, if it can show records of oral communication with the consumer, the ACCC expects this may be adequate to satisfy the obligations of the Recall Notice, absent any other evidence or conflicting information. The records would preferably be kept as part of normal business records and would include information identifying the person(s) on behalf of the supplier involved in such communication. The ACCC also expects that such person(s) would be available for verification if required.

Examples of inadequate evidence

Unresponsive consumers

In relation to applications under section 5(4)(a) of the Recall Notice (unresponsive consumers), the ACCC considers the following to be inadequate evidence:

  • vehicles for which the Supplier has not conducted in person visits for a vehicle with an Alpha ATAI as is required by the Recall Notice (absent some explanation, such as that the person asked the supplier to stop contacting them).
  • vehicles where the ACCC learns that the consumer has reported they have sought to arrange replacement with the supplier on multiple occasions without success (or something similar, eg, they are continuing to seek replacement but there is some issue to be resolved between them and the supplier).

Uncontactable consumers

In relation to applications under section 5(4)(b) of the Recall Notice (uncontactable consumers), the ACCC considers the following to be inadequate evidence:

  • evidence that does not include material demonstrating that the escalation strategy in the supplier’s approved Communication and Engagement Plan had been followed;
  • evidence that showed that consumers had in fact been contacted (however, another ground for an application may exist, eg, grounds under section 5(4)(a) (non-responsive consumer);
  • evidence that indicated the Supplier had only used NEVDIS as a source to obtain consumer contact details  (rather than using alternative sources, such as registration authorities).

Vehicles unregistered for 2 years or more

In relation to applications under section 5(4)(c) of the Recall Notice for vehicles unregistered for 2 years or more, the ACCC does not consider NEVDIS data which shows a blank registration expiry date to be adequate evidence.

We are aware that records designated as “record type 5” in NEVDIS may be so designated where the vehicle has never been registered or the registration authority has removed or deleted information in relation to that vehicle. In relation to records designated as “record type 6” we understand from NEVIDS that a record may receive this designation where the VIN or chassis does not exist.

Consequently, where a vehicle is designated as having record type 5 or 6, we expect that suppliers will provide evidence that they have contacted all STRAs to confirm the vehicle has not been registered for at least two consecutive years or a supplier may make a submission under section 5(4)(a) or (b) of the Recall Notice if it satisfies that criteria.

Scrapped vehicles

In relation to applications made on the basis that a vehicle is scrapped, under section 5(4)(d) of the Recall Notice, the ACCC considers that NEVDIS data indicating that the vehicleis an  economic or inspected write-off (designated as “E” and “I” respectively in NEVDIS data) is not adequate evidence that the vehicle has been scrapped because these vehicles may be re-registered and returned to the road (whereas a statutory write-off cannot be re-registered).

What if NEVDIS and STRA dates differ?

Where NEVDIS and STRA dates differ, STRA dates take precedence as their data is more recent.

What if ATAIs have been retrieved or confirmed as destroyed by the supplier?

Where the ATAI has been retrieved or confirmed as destroyed, the ATAI or vehicle (if all ATAIs have been retrieved or destroyed), should be reported in the VIN Status Report as complete (use the “salvage_part_retrieved” option). Collection of removed ATAIs are covered as part of a Supplier’s obligations in relation to spare parts. Suppliers must retrieve any affected spare part of which it is notified (see section on spare parts).

What if the ATAIs have deployed?

Suppliers are not required to replace deployed ATAIs under the Recall Notice (where the ATAIs were deployed prior to presentation to the Supplier for replacement). These inflators and vehicles (if all ATAIs have deployed) should be reported in the VIN Status Report as “deployed.”

What can suppliers do to expedite assessment of applications under section 5(3)?

To expedite 5(3) applications, the ACCC recommends that suppliers:

  • Consider making an expedited application using a written declaration. See: Application for assessment of compliance with replacement obligations.
  • Check the application to make sure it is true and correct before submission. The ACCC will be proceeding on the basis that the application is true and correct. If the ACCC becomes aware of information which suggests a Vehicle(s) should not have been approved under section 5(3) of the Recall Notice, the ACCC will notify the supplier and may require further steps to be taken. 
  • Check the ACCC’s guidance on the Product Safety Australia website to ensure you have satisfied the requirements before submission.  
  • Ensure the basis on which you made the application is stated as opposed to providing evidence without indicating the category the evidence applies to.
  • Ensure duplicate and rectified vehicles are excluded from the application.
  • If the application relies on dated NEVDIS data as evidence to support it (e.g. where it is more than 1 month old), consider obtaining an updated data set from NEVDIS before submission as the vehicle status can change over time.
  • Avoid submitting multiple separate applications for small numbers of vehicles e.g. 2 vehicles or 10 vehicles.

Quarterly completion reports

What sort of complaints should I include in the Quarterly Completion Report?

Section 11(1)(e) of the Recall Notice provides that a supplier must track and keep records of complaints from consumers in respect of

  • an ATAI in a vehicle supplied by the supplier or
  • the supplier’s recall campaign.

The complaint must be identified by issue, location and include information on how the supplier has managed each issue. We note that complaints may come from a range of different sources. These include:

  • dealers
  • call centres
  • formal dispute resolution mechanisms
  • web forms
  • emails
  • letters
  • staff members
  • media and online forums
  • referrals from industry associations and
  • government agencies.

General enquiries in relation to an ATAI or the supplier’s Takata recall campaign are not required and should not be included as a complaint. For example, you do not need to include general enquiries about whether a vehicle is affected, the timing of a recall initiation (however, a complaint about any delay in replacement where the recall has been initiated would need to be included) or arranging a replacement airbag where the consumer has been appropriately advised in accordance with the Recall Notice.

How should I complete each template?

To complete each template:

  • Use the quarterly completion report template and refer to examples available here.
  • Submit to the ACCC as an Excel spreadsheet.
  • Use a consistent naming convention (for example, if you have referred to ‘Company Pty Ltd’ in one quarterly completion report, please use the same reference for other quarterly completion reports).
  • Complete all the fields in the template. For example, if you have included ‘how you learned of the complaint’ in the ‘briefly summarise the content of the complaint’ column, please include details in the column relating to how you learned of the complaint rather than leaving it blank.

How much detail should I include about complaints?

Entries should contain sufficient detail to enable the ACCC to understand the nature of the complaint and how it has been resolved or is being resolved. Suppliers should avoid providing one or two word summaries. The ‘Category of complaint’ column’ allows suppliers to provide a high-level summary of the complaint (see below for details on how to complete this column).

Please ensure that any description makes it clear that it is a complaint about specific supplier conduct and not consumer requests, queries and/or general expressions of dissatisfaction about the recall (for instance, the timing of a particular recall initiation or a supplier’s decision to use ATAIs).

How should I categorise complaints?

The template contains a drop down list under ‘Category of complaint’. This includes:

  • alpha inflators
  • delays
  • transport (hire/loan car, transport costs, other transport)
  • special circumstances (for example, any towing, hire/loan car, transport costs, technician)
  • communications or information (including communication or information that is incorrect, incomplete or inconsistent with the requirements of the Recall Notice)
  • costs of replacement
  • damage associated with the replacement
  • replacement airbag inflators (for example, for grey importers/RAWS participants, private importers, orphan vehicles)
  • purchased vehicles (consumer not provided with information in accordance with the Recall Notice when purchasing a vehicle subject to recall)
  • consumer guarantee complaints
  • injury or death
  • other aspects of recall or replacement process.

If you do not think the complaint is captured by the defined categories please select ‘other’, noting in appropriate detail the nature of the complaint. Examples are available in the consumer complaints demonstration spreadsheet.

What if I have resolved the complaint during the quarter?

Suppliers must include all complaints received during the quarter including those that were received and completed in the quarter. Please do not include complaints that were reported and completed in previous quarters unless:

  • they were described as ongoing in the previous quarter and were completed in the current quarter or
  • remain ongoing (unresolved) in the current quarter.

The quarterly completion report template has been amended to enable suppliers to clearly indicate the status of complaints (i.e., completed or ongoing).

Obtaining consumer contact details

What do I need to obtain owner contact details from NEVDIS?

Where a supplier wants to obtain contact details for registered vehicle owners from the National Exchange of Vehicle Driver Information System (NEVDIS), but the recall is not yet active, the supplier should email takatarecall@accc.gov.au to request a Supplier Project Number.

Suppliers can obtain access from NEVDIS for contact details by submitting a VIN list and the ACCC’s PRA Number (for an active recall) or the Supplier Project Number (for a future recall).

See also: Guidance for suppliers in obtaining vehicle owner contact details

What if NEVDIS data is incomplete or incorrect?

Sometimes, sources such as NEVDIS may be incomplete or incorrect. In these circumstances, the ACCC expects suppliers will use additional methods to gather accurate consumer contact information. This may include third party data validation, auction houses and car sales (among others).

The ACCC expects that a supplier would present evidence of attempts to identify alternative contact details where the NEVDIS data is incorrect or incomplete and complete the application fully, setting out details of the multiple efforts and using the escalation strategy required.

Quarantine, labelling and destruction

How must a supplier treat an ATAI in its possession, power or control?

Where a supplier removes an ATAI or the ATAI comes into the supplier’s possession or control, the Recall Notice requires that the supplier must ensure that it is immediately quarantined, labelled and handled in a manner to prevent reuse for anything other than testing by or on behalf of the supplier. A supplier must ensure that all such ATAIs are ultimately destroyed or used in testing and must provide evidence of this to the ACCC on request. For further information on the meaning of ‘ultimately destroyed’ and examples of evidence that may be used to demonstrate this, please see below.

Are there any circumstances in which a supplier can possess ATAIs for use other than in testing?

The Recall Notice permits a supplier to use a new ATAI in its possession to replace another ATAI. This may only be done in accordance with the requirements of the Recall Notice. Under no circumstances may a new ATAI be used as a replacement after 31 December 2019.

Are there any requirements on suppliers in relation to ATAIs in the possession, power or control of Dealers?

A supplier must provide instructions to its Dealers or other authorised representatives regarding quarantine, labelling and handling of ATAIs, and the supplier must provide evidence of these instructions to the ACCC on request.

Are there specific requirements for destruction of an ATAI?

The Recall Notice requires that a supplier must ensure that all ATAIs in its possession are ‘ultimately destroyed’ or used in testing.

The Recall Notice does not define ‘destroyed’ and therefore the term should be given its ordinary, natural meaning, which is to make ineffective or put an end to.

In other words, the ATAI should be destroyed in such a way so as to prevent reuse. This includes reuse as a replacement part.

The Recall Notice leaves the means of destruction open to each supplier and the ACCC recognises that this will vary from supplier to supplier (for example, detonation or disassembly). The supplier may choose to safely destroy the ATAIs itself or contract with a third party for the safe destruction of the ATAIs.

As ATAIs pose a risk to safety, it is important that suppliers and their representatives or contractors ensure that ATAIs under their control are disposed of safely and in accordance with legislative and regulatory requirements. This includes safe transportation.

What reporting requirements are there for destruction?

A supplier must be able to provide evidence to the ACCC, on request, to demonstrate the affected airbag has been destroyed or used in testing.

The Recall Notice does not provide a list of the types of evidence a supplier must keep and the type of evidence will vary. However, evidence might include:

  • written/photographic evidence of the time and date the ATAIs were removed from the vehicle
  • the number of ATAIs removed from a vehicle including photos of the vehicle’s VIN and the serial numbers of the affected airbags removed
  • invoices for the safe transport of the ATAI
  • invoices for the destruction of the ATAI
  • evidence of detonation or disassembly of the ATAI
  • certificates confirming that the ATAI has been destroyed or used in testing, including the procedure(s) taken to destroy the ATAI
  • evidence that the ATAI has been destroyed with a vehicle which was scrapped or destroyed
  • evidence that the ATAI was destroyed by deployment.

Depending on the circumstances and the evidence sought to be relied on, it may be necessary to provide more than one type or item of evidence, as some types of evidence may not be sufficient on their own.

Selling, hiring and leasing vehicles

Information for businesses that sell, hire or lease vehicles or vehicle parts is available at: Selling, hiring and leasing vehicles FAQs.

Contact

takatarecall@accc.gov.au

More information

Compulsory Takata airbag recall
Selling, hiring and leasing vehicles or parts FAQs