OT: Another runaway Toyota in San Diego, unbelievable

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Here's another Toyota that allegedly ran away.
http://www.egmcartech.com/2010/03/09/officer-helps-stop-runaway-toyota-prius-in-san-diego-w-video /
It was first reported on the news last night. In the previous thread on this problem, I pointed out that the most mysterious case was the Lexus that crashed in San Diego after being driven for a considerable distance by a CA Highway patrol officer. I thought the typical patrol officer would have enough smarts to figure out how to do the reasonable things to stop the car, one of the most obvious being to shift it into neutral. Well, after seeing this one, maybe those CA patrol cops don't have much sense at all.
This is another case where the driver called 911. There was enough time for a cop car to respond and get to the speeding car. And through all of that, at least according to the news I've seen so far, what they told the driver to do was to use the service brakes and the emergency brakes to slow the car from 90MPH down to 50. Then they positioned the cruiser in front of the car, slowing down so that the car touched the cruiser, and then told the driver to shut off the engine. Now that is shockingly stupid, And one would think there were multiple police personnel involved, yet no one told them to shift to neutral or to just turn off the engine? After everyone hearing about this on the news for months, you would think by now every cop would know about it and have thought through what to do. They let these guys carrry guns?
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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

http://www.egmcartech.com/2010/03/09/officer-helps-stop-runaway-toyota-prius-in-san-diego-w-video /
Further experiences reported here.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/8505942.stm
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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

http://www.egmcartech.com/2010/03/09/officer-helps-stop-runaway-toyota-prius-in-san-diego-w-video /
An updated report says the police instructed the driver to apply both regular and emergency brakes to slow the car down, then to press and hold the starter button to turn off the car. The car coasted to a stop, after which the officer placed his patrol car in front of the stopped vehicle as a further precaution.
Here's a timeline of the sudden acceleration problem as it became a national news story. I'd previously given Toyota the benefit of the doubt on this problem. After reading about how long and hard they worked to downplay, deny, and cover this up, no more.
http://www.motortrend.com/features/auto_news/2010/112_1001_toyota_recall_crisis/october.html
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I'm not convinced that some of these aren't people looking to cash in somehow.
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So, first, despite all the previous news stories the driver couldn't figure out to push the button to stop the car or to shift it into neutral? And the cops had to dispatch a cruiser, catch up with the guy who on the radio they said traveled 20 miles, to tell him to push the off button? And finally, it would seem that either the police or the guy figured he couldn't both push a button and step on the brakes at the same time?

I wouldn't be surprised that some of them are. This one in particular sounds fishy to me, especially since the news was saying he had brought the car to the dealer because he thought it was under recall. The dealer told him it was not and nothing needed to be done. Then he suddenly has this happen.
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So, first, despite all the previous news stories the driver couldn't figure out to push the button to stop the car or to shift it into neutral? And the cops had to dispatch a cruiser, catch up with the guy who on the radio they said traveled 20 miles, to tell him to push the off button? And finally, it would seem that either the police or the guy figured he couldn't both push a button and step on the brakes at the same time?

I wouldn't be surprised that some of them are. This one in particular sounds fishy to me, especially since the news was saying he had brought the car to the dealer because he thought it was under recall. The dealer told him it was not and nothing needed to be done. Then he suddenly has this happen.
=============== It sounded fishy to me too.
Cheri
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I wouldn't be surprised that some of them are. This one in particular sounds fishy to me, especially since the news was saying he had brought the car to the dealer because he thought it was under recall. The dealer told him it was not and nothing needed to be done. Then he suddenly has this happen.
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Double law suite so you can collect from the dealer too. I still don't understand why people don't shift into neutral. I don't care what the problem really is, that should work, every time.
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I can understand why some people don't. What I can't understand is how 911 operators aren't equipped by now to give out the basic advice that has been all over the news. Instead, in this case, the 911 operator dispatched a cruiser to go find the car, who even then didn't tell them the best procedure, which would be as you suggested, to put it in neutral, then slow down and steer off the road.
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On Mar 9, 11:24am, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

"I can understand why some people don't"
I can't. What would, in your opinion, be a good reason not to?
Harry K
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I didn't say there is any good reason not to try to shift into neutral. I said I can understand why there are some people who don't. It could be that they just don't think of it. Or that they think they can't shift while the car is in motion. Or maybe they think the engine will explode and kill them or cause a crash. I saw one report where on one of the runaway cars someone did shift to neutral but when they heard the engine speed up, they put it back in drive. God only knows what some people think.
Of course there are people who claim they tried to shift into neutral but could not. And there we had the big disagreement in the previous thread, with some people like you insisting that there is absolutely no reason they could not. I'm willing to give at least some of them the benefit of the doubt until we have a thorough investigation, including engineering experts that have a look at the design as well as the actual transmissions involved.
I would love to hear someone ask all the people involved in this incident yesterday what their reason was for not shifting into neutral. From what I've seen in the media, no one suggested it. That includes the driver, the 911 operator and anyone else involved in the phone call, and the officer responding. It's also curios that will all the media reports, including commentary I've heard, not one of those reports questioned why they could not have simply dealt with it that way.
One point, which I believe was yours, from the previous discussion seems to have received support from this incident. And that is that just because someone is a CA highway patrol officer doesn't mean they have any better sense of what to do than the average Joe.
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On Mar 9, 2:38pm, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Totally agree with that post including in particular that last part. Also I saw ne mention of the chippy telling him to turn it off until it was at (or near) stopped.
Harry K
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I can understand why some people don't. What I can't understand is how 911 operators aren't equipped by now to give out the basic advice that has been all over the news. Instead, in this case, the 911 operator dispatched a cruiser to go find the car, who even then didn't tell them the best procedure, which would be as you suggested, to put it in neutral, then slow down and steer off the road.
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Last night they played the 91 recording. The operator did ask him about neutral and he was afraid as he thought the car might flip over. His license should be revoked and Toyota should give him a pack of bus tokens. Toyota may have caused the original problem, but he caused the rest by his own incompetence.
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Ed Pawlowski wrote the following:

As I recall from the 911 conversation, when the 911 operator asked him if he could shift into neutral, he said he was just trying to control the car. I suppose he could have put down the cell phone and tried..
--

Bill
In Hamptonburgh, NY
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willshak wrote the following:

http://autos.aol.com/article/prius-driver-scam
--

Bill
In Hamptonburgh, NY
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On Mar 9, 11:10am, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Case shown on the news the other night. Car parked nose into a parking spot, driver crawls in, fires it up, jumps curb and into a store front. Excuse? "it ran away". So the car just suddenly shifted into _drive_ and accelerated with no action by the driver? Yep, I believe in Santa, also.
Harry K
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Those have been happening for years with all kinds of cars and really aren't that surprising. The ones I have seen are overwhelmingly senior citizens and it seems very likely they were confused and didn't know what they were doing. Most of the ones I've seen have also been logically explained by them mistaking the gas pedal for the brake.
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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote the following:

He was on the cell phone to 911 at the time. You know what they say about using a cell phone while driving..
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Bill
In Hamptonburgh, NY
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Nothing is offered to cash in on, you waste alot of time and agravation and just hope its repaired, but why people just dont turn off the motor is dumb
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Of course there is something to cash in on. At the very least, the guy becomes the celebrity du jour and has his 15 minutes of fame. He's got the media all over him and it wouldn't be unusual for him to wind up on Larry King, etc. That alone motivates some people. Remember the balloon boy in Denver?
Plus, while there are no actual damages, I wouldn't be surprised to find lawyers wanting to take the case for their publicity, claiming he now suffers from traumatic stress syndrome, in the hopes that Toyota and/or the dealer will give them some money to get lost.
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On Mar 10, 9:38am, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

I don't disagree that it does happen. But as someone else noted a significant majority are pedal confusion. Studies have shown that some cars are more prone to pedal confusion that others. Seniors are particularly at risk.
There will be damages and people will sue. This guy could join a future class action suit and possibly get some money that way. This incident stinks to high heaven.
Frankly people that don't have enough sense to take a car out of gear when the accelerator is stuck probably should have failed the driving test. And be removed from the gene pool as well.
Many cars do lock the steering without taking the key out. But most of them will only do it when the shifter is in park. Not in nuetral. This is a safety feature so that you cannot accidentally lock the steering while the car is moving.
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