Toyota Motor Corp. recently proclaimed they found a fix for the gas pedal problem which led to a massive recall including over four million vehicles. Unfortunately, it is going to take a while for Toyota dealerships to train their repairmen on how to implement the fix. Until then, Toyota drivers across the country are still at risk of getting involved in a major car wreck due to sudden acceleration.
Recently, a Toyota driver in St. Petersburg, Florida (FL) named Hoai Luong was in her 2007 Toyota Camry when the gas pedal became stuck resulting in the car flipping over.
"She just said it would not stop. That was it," said Paul Jackson, a witness to the car accident, according to ABC News.
Stories like this indicate Toyota drivers don’t have time to simply wait for a fix. They need a solution now.
The proposed solution is a steel reinforcement bar, or shim, which is supposed to reduce the friction between the pedal and a device that generates a proper “feel” for acceleration, according to boston.com. Toyota released a statement alleging this acceleration device rubs against a metal surface on the gas pedal during normal use and over time, the device wears out and can prevent the pedal from operating smoothly, like becoming stuck.
However, this is the same company that originally said the problem was with the floor mats and then said the problem was the length of the pedal itself. I’d be wary of any definitive proclamations from Toyota at this point.
Here’s a video illustrating the Toyota gas pedal problem…
Three class-action lawsuits have been filed against Toyota, in addition to numerous individual lawsuits. One of the complaints alleges the real problem is with the electronic throttle-control system that is used in many Toyota models. The complaint, which was filed in a West Virginia (WV) federal court states, “Vehicles equipped with ETCS-I have a dangerous propensity to suddenly accelerate without driver input and against the intentions of the driver.” Another complaint alleges Toyota knew about this problem way back in 2002, but failed to take any serious action to correct the problem.
As stated earlier, we don’t really know how deep this gas pedal problem goes. Could it simply be a problem with the friction generated between the pedal and the acceleration device? Maybe. Or could it be related to the ETCS? Again, no one knows for sure. What we do know is that many Toyota vehicles are potentially dangerous and you, as a driver, need to be keenly aware of the sudden acceleration threat these vehicles pose (either as a Toyota driver or a driver on the road who encounters a Toyota vehicle).
About the Editors: Shapiro, Cooper, Lewis & Appleton personal injury law firm (NC-VA law offices ) edits the injury law blogs Northeast North Carolina Injuryboard, Virginia Beach Injuryboard, and Norfolk Injuryboard as a pro bono service to consumers.