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Hyundai recalls 239,000 cars over exploding seat belt parts

The parts can send shrapnel throughout the car upon a collision, government regulators said.

Hyundai is recalling 239,000 vehicles over reports that a "pyrotechnic" element connected to its seat belts may cause them to malfunction, sending shrapnel throughout the car.

In a notice posted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, U.S. regulators warned abnormal deployment of the component, called a pretensioner, could cause metal fragments to disburse throughout the vehicle, resulting in injuries. At least three people, two in the U.S. and one in Singapore, have been injured, the Associated Press reported.

A pretensioner is attached to a standard seat belt and deploys in the event of a collision or under hard braking to restrict the movement of a passenger.

Affected vehicles include 2019-2022 Hyundai Accents, 2021-2023 Hyundai Elantras, and 2021-2022 Hyundai Elantra HEVs.

Owners of affected vehicles will be notified by July 15 with instructions to bring their vehicles to a Hyundai dealer to have the seat belt pretensioner secured with a cap to prevent potential abnormal deployment.

Additional information can be found at Hyundai customer service: 855-371-9460, reference recall number 229. The NHTSA vehicle safety hotline can be reached at 888-327-4236 or at