Pre-Collision Braking Almost Killed Me Today

Discussion in 'Prime Main Forum (2017-Current)' started by PiPLosAngeles, Feb 6, 2020.

  1. PiPLosAngeles

    PiPLosAngeles Active Member

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    I was starting out at a green traffic light in the early hours this morning, so it was still dark. The car ahead of me did the usual jackrabbit start and took off while I did the usual hyper-mile turtle start. When I got into the intersection and the car in front of me was about 50 yards ahead, my car violently stopped cold. It was hard enough to lock my seat belts and make me think someone had hit me from behind at speed. Only after I was stopped the red "BRAKE!!!" with the accompanying beeps appeared on the dash. There was nothing in front of me, the car ahead had not braked, and none of the cars visible in other lanes had braked. I do not know what triggered the car to do that.

    The car behind me almost hit me and then started a mini-road rage routine because he thought I was brake checking him. What was also concerning is that for about 5 - 10 seconds the car would not let me go. I was stuck stopped in the middle of the intersection.

    I had never given it any thought before, but now I'm very concerned about one of the following scenarios playing out:
    1. The car does this and triggers a collision where I am found to be at fault for slamming on my brakes for no reason. The idea of being held liable for an accident I had no control over is very concerning to me. How would I prove the car did it and not me?
    2. If this system were to trigger like that on the highway I could be killed by an inattentive driver.
    I already filed a NHTSA complaint, and obviously Toyota will be inspecting the car, but I wanted to know if anyone else had experienced anything like that?

    Having a car that you cannot control is VERY disconcerting.
     
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  2. schja01

    schja01 One of very few in Chicagoland

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    New class: "Unintended Deceleration".
     
  3. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    No, I have never had experience similar to yours. Did you search through the NHTSA complaint site to see if there are similar incidences reported before? As far as proving the case, it would have to be a suit against Toyota. Yeah, that could get muddy. I am not a big fan of all those so called safety features on newer cars.
     
  4. Georgina Rudkus

    Georgina Rudkus Senior Member

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    The system, like all technologies, is a "double edged sword.." It cuts both ways. Just hope that the positive outweighs the negative.

    A cautious and at tentative driver often beats technologies.

    Good examples were Neil Armstrong's intervention on the Apollo 11 moon landing.

    Bad examples are the two current Boeing failures of the 737 Supermax and the Starliner's failure to dock with the ISS.
     
  5. davecook89t

    davecook89t Senior Member

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    I have never experienced anything like this, nor have I seen any reports of others experiencing it and I spend a lot of time reading posts in this forum. Even if this is a one-in-a-million occurrence, that is of little comfort if you happen to be the one. You have my sympathy. Hopefully NHTSA can do something to prevent this from ever occurring again.
     
  6. schja01

    schja01 One of very few in Chicagoland

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    "so it was still dark. "

    OP: I wonder if that dead pedestrian wearing dark clothing lying on the pavement behind you had anything to do with it?
     
  7. PiPLosAngeles

    PiPLosAngeles Active Member

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    My only hope is that the car stores enough information about the incident for Toyota to be able to diagnose it. I've had the red light flash and the car beep many times when a collision is NOT imminent, but I've just learned to ignore it (not good, I know). At least in those cases there was someone braking, or I was approaching someone quickly, but I've never had it just stop my car cold without warning.
     
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  8. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    This... I have experienced several times on my car as well. But as you said, the automatic brake did not engage in those incidences.
     
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  9. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    what can the driver do to mitigate this circumstance?
     
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  10. schja01

    schja01 One of very few in Chicagoland

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  11. m8547

    m8547 Active Member

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    I was rear-ended once, and I think that triggered the automatic emergency braking since it pushed me towards the stopped car in front of me. During that I think the car put itself in neutral. So that might be why it wouldn't let you go. Did you have to shift back to drive or restart the car?
     
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  12. PiPLosAngeles

    PiPLosAngeles Active Member

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    That's where Boeing went wrong, and apparently Toyota: preventing the driver/pilot from overriding the software. That is a very dangerous proposition. Warning the driver is one thing, or even applying the brakes, but ignoring that the driver is pressing the gas and stopping the car anyway can be very dangerous.

    What if there really was going to be a collision, but my choice was to collide with a car or be hit behind by a tractor trailer going 70 mph? Toyota would block me from saving myself. That's a horrible idea. A driver MUST be able to take control of their vehicle at ALL times.
     
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  13. Georgina Rudkus

    Georgina Rudkus Senior Member

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    I have a disdain for "technology for technology's sake."

    A good example would be the requirement for split second multiple controls like the DSKY computerized 16 function attitude control system on the Apollo Command Module spacecraft. Humans could not perform this task.

    No one needs a smartphone app to check the tire pressure on a car requiring an OBDII adapter, when I basic $5 tire gauge works just fine.

    And, who really needs a powered tail gate on a pickup truck. Ford just recalled theirs for opening and dumping their loads on the highway.
     
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  14. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    toyota was forced to allow braking to override throttle. perhaps the opposite will also come to pass.
     
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  15. PiPLosAngeles

    PiPLosAngeles Active Member

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    Bells and whistles are one thing, but seizing control from the driver and BLOCKING them from taking control seems grossly negligent to me.
     
  16. schja01

    schja01 One of very few in Chicagoland

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    Not to mention AirBus. Think Paris Air Show AB A320-111.
     
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  17. PiPLosAngeles

    PiPLosAngeles Active Member

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    I did not. I was trying to press the gas and it would not move. It started moving once the red light cleared.
     
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  18. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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  19. PiPLosAngeles

    PiPLosAngeles Active Member

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    This brings us to an old debate: is it ethical to sacrifice the individual for the higher good? In other words, is triggering accidents with these systems ethical if it reduces the overall number of accidents? It may save lives in the case of accidental collisions and cost lives in collisions triggered by false activations. Is it "OK" to cause an innocent person to be killed to save two others? I personally prefer that Toyota or Congress isn't deciding that it's ok to kill me to save someone else.

    EDIT - At least it can be disabled, which it will be forever more in my car.
     
    #19 PiPLosAngeles, Feb 6, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2020
  20. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    From a quick reading, at least for US, the automatic emergency braking system is not going to be mandated by law any time soon. But many car makers are embracing the technology to make it standard for most if not all cars sold in the US by 2022. At least as an owner of the car, we have an option to turn the system off completely.

    40 countries agree to automatic emergency braking mandate; US to rely on voluntary compliance - Today's Motor Vehicles
     
    #20 Salamander_King, Feb 6, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2020
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