His face was “shredded”: the airbag of his Citroën exploded, part of his face was shattered

His face was “shredded”: the airbag of his Citroën exploded, part of his face was shattered

A young woman found herself disfigured by the explosion of the airbag in her Citroën. She is not the only one (illustrative photo). Arno Senoner – UNSPLASH

Part of a driver's face was shattered following the explosion of her Citroën's airbag. The motorist testified in the show Sept à Huit on TF1, June 16, 2024.

She was hit by a vehicle which ran a stop sign, on October 24, 2021. &quot ;My car was thrown. I heard a big bang. I felt my face burning a lot and I screamed: "Ouch ! My mouth, my mouth! I'm hot. I'm in pain'", says Raïssa, driver of a Citroën, in the show Sept à Huit broadcast on TF1 Sunday 16&nbsp ;June 2024.

Her daughter, sitting in the back seat, describes her mother's "ragged" face, as if she had received "a rifle bullet in the face".

Five reconstruction operations

Part of the driver's face was shattered, following the explosion of her airbag. She underwent emergency surgery and subsequently underwent nearly five facial reconstruction operations with prostheses, bone and skin grafts.

She wears a mask

Today, she wears a mask and no longer dares to show her face in public. She will let him appear for a few seconds in front of the camera from Sept to Huit, to launch a cry of alarm in the name of all the victims.

Massive recall from Citroën

In mid-May 2024, in a letter addressed to its customers, the automobile giant Citroën alerted owners of C3 and DS3 models to a problem with defective airbags. The French car manufacturer invited them to "immediately stop driving (their) vehicle.

This massive recall only concerns C3 and DS3 sold between 2009 and 2019. In total, 605,777 vehicles sold in Southern Europe, the Middle East and North Africa are affected.

In France, 181 734 C3 cars as well as 65 149 DS3s are affected by this problem. The south of the country would be mainly impacted due to the heat which degrades a gas "aging over the years".

If your vehicle is affected by a recall campaign, "you must contact your authorized repairer as quickly as possible. These interventions are carried out free of charge", indicates Citroën on its site, specifying the procedure to follow.

Angry Drivers

A month and a half after the start of the recall campaign, the Stellantis group claims to have replaced the airbags of 35,000 cars, or less than 15% of the recalled automobiles, according to TF1. Thousands of angry drivers, whose cars were immobilized, gathered on Facebook groups. These motorists intend to take collective action to claim compensation.

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