FORT BEND (FOX 26) - Huma Hanif will be seventeen forever.
"It's just hard to lose her." says her brother Faizan.
Late afternoon on the 31st, she was in a minor fender bender at Highway 762 and Gonyo Rd. Ft. Bend County Deputies say she should've been able to walk away, but she didn't. You can see in the accident photo that the airbag went off. Deputies says shrapnel from that airbag killed her.
"This metal fragment we recovered from Huma's neck severed her jugular and carotid artery. She died within seconds." says Deputy Danny Beckworth.
Takata made the airbag in question. Huma is now the 11th person to die from shrapnel from a Takata airbag and 100 more have been injured. The airbags have been the subject of recall.
Nothing will undo this tragedy, nothing will bring her back. But the sheriff says there is something you can do to protect yourself and your loved ones.
It's not clear if those recall notices ever got to Huma's family, after all they bought it used and her brother swears they didn't. So the sheriff is encouraging everyone to go to www.safercar.gov. Enter your vehicles identification number and check to see if there are any recalls for your vehicle. Unfortunately there aren't always fixes for the recalled parts..
"I'm not Honda, I'm not Takata, I'm not GM. But our responsibility as a law enforcement agency is to do what we can to inform and educate the public that has a vehicle to enter your vin number and determine if there is a recall." says Sheriff Troy Nehls.
But he says at least it will let you make a informed decision about what to do. Because the next fender bender might be yours.