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Takata, injured drivers reach deal to end U.S. bankruptcy

Staff Writer |
Takata’s U.S. unit reached a settlement with its creditors, lawyers for those injured by its deadly air bags and automakers that smoothes the way to end its Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

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The Japanese company’s air bags can explode with too much force and have been linked to at least 21 deaths and hundreds of injuries, prompting the largest recall in automotive history and forcing Takata and its U.S. unit, TK Holdings, into bankruptcy.

The U.S. unit was gearing up for a court fight starting on Tuesday to get approval for its plan to exit bankruptcy over the opposition of a committee for injured drivers and a separate committee of unsecured creditors.

But those two committees, automakers and Key Safety Systems, which is acquiring the viable business lines of Takata, reached a deal that resolves the biggest objections to the plan, according to court documents filed on Saturday.

Under the agreement, a trust will be established to pay compensation for those injured or killed by the air bags, which will be funded in part by automakers surrendering some of their claims against Takata.

An amended plan of reorganization will be filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court soon, according to Takata’s U.S. unit.

Tuesday’s court hearing had been adjourned to Thursday at the earliest, Takata’s U.S. unit said in court papers filed on Sunday.

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