In New York and elsewhere, it’s common for brake parts to be replaced with rebuilt parts. For example, it’s common for garages to install rebuilt brake calipers, brake pads and shoes, master cylinders and power brake boosters. Furthermore, when repairing or maintaining brakes on trucks, its also common to use rebuilt air compressors and brake valves. Therefore, the most important system on any vehicle, the braking system, is routinely repaired and maintained with re-built or refurbished parts. Many times, the parts to be rebuilt (the “cores”) are obtained from salvage yards (junkyards).
However, the New York State Legislature, in its infinite wisdom, has found it necessary to bar the installation of salvaged airbag systems (called inflatable restraint systems under New York law). Effective March 1, 1999, airbag systems in New York may only be replaced with new systems or salvaged systems which have been certified pursuant to standards set by a nationally recognized testing, engineering and research organization (See VTL § 398-d(6)(e) & 415-c (2)).
Here’s the problem with this law; leave it to the New York State Legislature to pass a law requiring salvaged airbag systems to meet standards set by a nationally recognized testing, engineering and research organization when no such standards or organization to develop such standards exist. And, leave it to the New York Court of Appeals to hold that the failure of the Department of Motor Vehicles to develop such standards did not invalidate the law. N.Y.A.A.D., Inc. v. State of New York, 1 N.Y.3d 245, 771 N.Y.S.2d 54 (N.Y. 2003)
Accordingly, in New York, no matter what reason the air bag system was removed from a vehicle, it may not be sold and installed in another vehicle. Therefore, even if the original car was junked due to a blown engine or rear-end collision, the perfectly working air bag system must be junked.
For more information regarding any New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law issue, feel free to contact Tilem & Campbell toll free at 1-877-377-8666 or visit us on the web at www.TrafficTicketExpress.com.