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Old 16th October 2018, 07:49   #1
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Default Now, Airbags being stolen in India!

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A gang with a fondness for airbags fitted inside Toyota cars has struck at four roadside locations in the city in less than a week, carting away the safety devices, AC controllers and other accessories after smashing front-seat windows.
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The thieves removed the two airbag kits, audio system, AC controllers, starting and mirror kits, and the sunglasses holder,” Somashekar said. “This is the first time I have come across thieves who steal airbags. I am sure they had proper knowledge of Innova’s accessories.”
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The thieves removed the airbags and other items without creating a mess: not a single wire was cut; they undid all the clips and screws that held the accessories in place. “They must be mechanics or former employees of a garage or a service centre. Average crooks cannot pull off a job so neatly,” Somashekar said. “When I went to a service centre on Mysore Road, the staff told me that this was the fourth complaint about airbag theft that they had received.”

Source Article


What could they possibly do by stealing Airbags?

Last edited by moralfibre : 16th October 2018 at 09:06. Reason: Fixing broken link
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Old 16th October 2018, 08:47   #2
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Default re: Now, Airbags being stolen in India!

Thanks for sharing.
This is quite strange and unheard of until now.

I understand the point of stealing audio systems, but airbags?
The thieves are definitely well versed with the internals of the car to execute such theft. Most probably mechanics.

Came across this article in Autoblog on similar trend in US, but focusing on Honda cars.

Honda airbags are being stolen

Apparently the stolen airbags get sold on ebay for lot less compared to new ones.

Not sure whether this will work in India.

Last edited by speedmiester : 16th October 2018 at 08:49.
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Old 16th October 2018, 09:05   #3
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Default re: Now, Airbags being stolen in India!

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Originally Posted by speedmiester View Post
Thanks for sharing.

Not sure whether this will work in India.
It may not be sold online but won't there be takers for airbag units in scrap yards? Getting airbags replaced (after they deploy or are reported faulty outside of warranty) at the A$$ costs a lot of money.
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Old 16th October 2018, 09:18   #4
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Default re: Now, Airbags being stolen in India!

Man, this is crazy! First audio head-units, then wheels, badges and now airbags

Airbag replacements go well over Rs 1 lakh for many cars, so this isn't that surprising.

However, if you ever have the option to, DON'T ever buy an airbag from anyplace other than the authorised service center. These might come cheap, but they might have been damaged. You need an airbag only once in life - if at all - and it better deploy at that time!

Last edited by GTO : 16th October 2018 at 09:19.
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Old 16th October 2018, 09:26   #5
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Default Re: Now, Airbags being stolen in India!

Never knew there exists a market for second hand airbags!! Who in their right mind will get airbags replaced with those from scrapped cars? Just doesn't make sense. Even assuming there are a lot of Toyota cabbies out there, airbags are not wear and tear items, like tyres for instance, that need replacement again and again. Bizarre to say the least.
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Old 16th October 2018, 09:55   #6
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Default Re: Now, Airbags being stolen in India!

https://www.olx.in/bangalore/spare-parts/q-airbag/


Air bags, second hand ones are in high demand, especially the Innovas, and the VAG cars.
How do you think they lay their hands on these ...apart from total loss vehicles, in which the airbag must be deployed anyways.
They also recondition this and sell them off.

Last edited by jeeva : 16th October 2018 at 10:03.
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Old 16th October 2018, 10:06   #7
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Default Re: Now, Airbags being stolen in India!

Possibly because the thieves know a Toyota never use its Airbags.

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Originally Posted by Prathiiik View Post
What could they possibly do by stealing Airbags?
Jokes aside, I think these will be sold to salvage buyers who restore cars written off from accidents. Airbag replacement upon minor hits can be costly if the car doesn't have zero depreciation insurance.

High time there is a policy and proper procedure on scrapped cars which are written off. These ideally shouldn't be back on the roads.
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Old 16th October 2018, 10:34   #8
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Default Re: Now, Airbags being stolen in India!

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Originally Posted by jeeva View Post
https://www.olx.in/bangalore/spare-parts/q-airbag/


Air bags, second hand ones are in high demand, especially the Innovas, and the VAG cars.
How do you think they lay their hands on these ...apart from total loss vehicles, in which the airbag must be deployed anyways.
They also recondition this and sell them off.
This is scary .
The ads listed on the link pretty much has the same images. Must be a nexus.
When most manufacturers are reluctant to sell basic spare parts outside of their service centers, how on earth can these "dealers" get the airbags, aside from stealing them?
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Old 16th October 2018, 16:43   #9
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Default Re: Now, Airbags being stolen in India!

Looks like some people are thinking about the future when airbags will be made mandatory in India and are stocking up to help people then!! (pun intended)

But can airbag units be removed that easily, that too by breaking into the car? Also after the accidents where the airbags are deployed, normally the repairs are done in the service centers itself. Hope there is no involvement of dealers here.No offense meant, just a speculation.
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Old 16th October 2018, 17:15   #10
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Default Re: Now, Airbags being stolen in India!

Thats a pretty neat job. The detective inside me tells that those thieves have worked on airbags professionally. So they must have either been associated with Toyota service center/factory or some good garage.
Also, Toyota's manufacturing plant is not that far from Bengaluru, so a job pulled off by a dropout ?

My car was smashed just like this in Pune back in 2012 but those guys were not able to remove the factory fitted music system, or might be their only aim was to vandalize the car as its alarm would have gone off if doors were opened. Not sure why that is not the case here. Did they also disconnect the battery ?
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Old 16th October 2018, 17:54   #11
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Default Re: Now, Airbags being stolen in India!

I would normally consider the airbags similar to the parachute backpack. If that doesn't open on the occasion and time that I need it; I am done for. A humble request to anyone trying to save money on airbags, please take it only to the authorised centres.

However, how would we be sure these people are not creating an 'underground' supply chain for these airbags with authorised centres? This is an extremely serious issue, one which we cannot corroborate or confirm in any way when work is done on our car.

Edit: I assume the owners would get the airbag module replaced via insurance due to theft. I hope there is no loss (other than the basic processing fees and no claim bonus) to be paid by the owner. Unless they decide they would prefer to use that space for an additional glovebox

Last edited by selfdrive : 16th October 2018 at 17:56.
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Old 16th October 2018, 21:02   #12
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Default Re: Now, Airbags being stolen in India!

Stealing of air bags is nothing new.

It is happening all across the world.

Just a few random articles from across the globe:

https://eu.usatoday.com/story/money/...ll/1523799002/

https://www.manchestereveningnews.co...mewave-6712889

https://www.ad.nl/amersfoort/tiental...tuur~a814841a/

And it is not just airbags. All sorts of items get stolen.

And it all is sold on the black after market? Huge business!

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Old 16th October 2018, 22:53   #13
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Default Re: Rants on Bangalore's traffic situation

After incidents of vehicle tyres getting stolen from vehicles parked next to road, this seems to be a new trend.

Though heading mentions about air bags, from article you find that it's not just about airbags.

Link

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The thieves removed the airbags and other items without creating a mess: not a single wire was cut; they undid all the clips and screws that held the accessories in place. “They must be mechanics or former employees of a garage or a service centre. Average crooks cannot pull off a job so neatly,” Somashekar said. “When I went to a service centre on Mysore Road, the staff told me that this was the fourth complaint about airbag theft that they had received.”
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Old 17th October 2018, 07:14   #14
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Default Re: Now, Airbags being stolen in India!

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Originally Posted by selfdrive View Post
However, how would we be sure these people are not creating an 'underground' supply chain for these airbags with authorised centres? This is an extremely serious issue, one which we cannot corroborate or confirm in any way when work is done on our car.
You raise an important point that we can't ignore, at least in India given our love for jugaad. I've been in such a situation twice: I was told (without enough or reasonable justification) that a certain expensive part needed replacement and when I dilly dallied, was taken outside the A.S.S. and given the option that they would do the replacement by taking the part from a total loss vehicle. The cost would be 60-80%, it would be done at the A.S.S. itself, off the record and would have the service manager's blessings.
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Old 17th October 2018, 08:54   #15
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Default Re: Now, Airbags being stolen in India!

My Dad being an insurance surveyor, i get to visit a lot of garages and work shops when i am roaming around with him. He once took me to a workshop at Chembur in Mumbai where a completely smashed Innova, whish was crumbled as if crushed by a crusher was re-done in 3 months time. The guy would order most of the parts from the company but many would be sourced locally.

I just could not believe i was looking at a car that was completely crushed few months back. I was shown the pictures of the crushed Innova, it was a total loss vehicle which gets sold by the insurance company as scrap and these workshop owners buy the scrap. Then there are investors who put in money to get it back in shape and then sell it to Taxi folks who buy it happily.

The market for stolen, re-furbished auto parts is just huge. My dad would aways say that if one wants to, he can build a complete customized car buy buying each and every part from Kurla area in Mumbai and get it assembled in a workshop.

But this news is epic. Any clue how long it would take them to break in a car and get the airbag unit out? 30 mins? I think car companies need to innovate in a way that a airbag or official accessory will ONLY work with that particular car and if removed and fitted to another car, it would need a visit to A$$.
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