The airbag in your vehicle may have a deadly defect.

Instead or protecting you, these defective airbags explode like grenades, spraying metal shrapnel inside the passenger compartment. Eleven people have died, including two right here in Houston. More than 180 people have been severely injured. The good news is, the repair is absolutely free.

A nationwide recall of these defective parts – the largest safety recall in U.S. history – includes millions of vehicles made by 19 different automakers. The defect is made worse by prolonged exposure to heat and humidity. That makes Houston one of the highest-risk cities in the country.

According to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration, the risk for death or injury is highest in certain 2001, 2002 and 2003 Hondas and Acuras like those pictured here:

These vehicles pose a 50 percent chance of explosion upon deployment. That’s 1 in 2. Even a minor fender bender can cause your airbag to explode.

Help us save lives by spreading the word.

Here’s how check if your vehicle has a dangerous airbag:

1. FIND IT: Write down or photograph your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) found on the driver-side dashboard by the windshield or on your insurance card.

2. SEARCH IT: Visit and enter your 17-digit VIN.

3. FIX IT: If you see text that reads “recall incomplete,” YOUR AIRBAG INFLATOR WILL BE REPLACED FOR FREE. Schedule an appointment at your automaker’s local dealership as soon as possible. If it says “remedy not available,” call a dealer anyway. Make sure your contact information is up to date, so they can notify you when parts are available for your FREE repair.

Keeping our community safe is a top priority for us. That’s why we have joined fellow members of Airbag Recall: Houston – a coalition of community leaders and organizations committed to raising awareness about this urgent public safety crisis.

Person-to-person outreach is incredibly important. Take a few minutes to assist just one other person – a friend, a family member, a neighbor – to check their vehicle, and you could be saving a life – especially if that person drives a high-risk vehicle.

Together, we can achieve our goal of repairing or replacing every defective airbag in Houston.