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Is Sudden Acceleration in Toyota Cars a Liability or a Defect?

Submitted by jrlaw on Nov 10th, 2009

Imagine driving down a street in your neighborhood on a sunny day in a Toyota. Then, sudden acceleration in speed results in a runaway car that cannot be stopped. Unfortunately, this has become a reality for some. This ordeal has caused Toyota customers to become terrified to drive their automobiles.

The Facts behind Runaway Cars

Toyota has always been known for their safe cars. However, ABC News reported 16 deaths and over 200 accidents stemming from sudden acceleration in Toyota cars. This has prompted Toyota to recall 3.8 million vehicles including the Camry, Prius and Lexus models. Some reasons for this sudden acceleration can include:

• Wrong size floor mats
• Computerized engine control system lacks safety mechanism
• Poorly designed accelerator pedal

Is it a Manufacturing Defect or Product Liability?

The floor mat, held by two clips, may come loose and jam the acceleration pedal. However, many car experts point out that the floor mats are not the only reason for sudden acceleration. Runaway car victims have expressed that the affected Toyota car’s brake system also shuts down during sudden acceleration.

Many argue that the problem can be solved by shutting off the engine. Yet in some models, push button starters are used to start the vehicle and a person must hold down the button for at least 3 seconds to shut off the ignition. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has had an open investigation into Toyota runaway cars since 2003. However, they found no defect in Toyota’s electronics. The LA Times reported Toyota has had nine federal investigations and inquiries since 2000.

Rasansky Law firm is dedicated to being an advocate for individuals who suffer injuries or death from Toyota vehicles. If you feel that this is a manufacturing defect or product liability, do not hesitate to fill out our free case evaluation form. Our team will gladly review the facts of your situation.