Hurricane Takata is the biggest ever recall to hit the auto industry, and it’s now making landfall in China, after wreaking havoc elsewhere. As China is the world’s largest auto market, the numbers are big.

Last week, market leader Volkswagen and its JVs FAW-Volkswagen and SAIC Volkswagen announced a recall of 4.86 million vehicles in China due to potential issues with Takata’s airbag inflators. Reuters reports that the recall comes after Chinese watchdogs asked the German giant as well as GM and Mercedes-Benz to recall cars with Takata airbags earlier this year.

VW told the newswire that after discussions, Chinese authorities had concluded the fault could occur in rare cases when the air bag was deployed, “which may create a potential safety risk”.

“Acting upon advice from the Chinese safety authority, Volkswagen Group China therefore made this recall decision,” VW said, adding that it had not received any reports related to the issue affecting its vehicles globally, and that a parts analysis had found Takata airbag inflators were in “normal condition”.

China’s General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (GAQSIQ) said that VW China would recall 103,573 vehicles, FAW-Volkswagen 2.35 million vehicles and SAIC Volkswagen 2.4 million vehicles. The watchdog said the recall would run from March 2018 into 2019.

General Motors and its joint venture in China, Shanghai GM, is following suit with a recall of more than 2.5 million vehicles. From October 29, GM will recall 13,492 imported Saab and Opel vehicles, followed by 2.51 million China-made Chevrolet and Buick cars from December 29.

According to Chinese state news agency Xinhua, GAQSIQ said the faulty Takata airbag inflator problem covers 37 car manufacturers and more than 20 million vehicles, of which 24 carmakers had recalled 10.59 million vehicles by the end of June.

It appears like the two major auto giants in China weren’t very proactive with the recall, allowing others to move first. Better late than never, though, and there have been no reports of incidents so far in China, which has climate on its side in this matter.

The Takata airbag inflator defect is due to propellant degradation occurring after prolonged exposure to high humidity and temperatures. The inflators contain a non-desiccated, phase stabilised ammonium nitrate propellant that may cause the rupture of the module. If it does, metal fragments will pass through the airbag as it inflates and shoot into the cabin, leading to possible serious injury or death. 16 deaths and 180 injuries have been linked to this problem globally.