Why the "Out of Control" Prius Driver Is Full of It

Discussion in 'Prius, Hybrid, EV and Alt-Fuel News' started by Danny, Mar 9, 2010.

  1. efusco

    efusco Moderator Emeritus
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    Whatever...and he didn't try neutral b/c? going too fast, and accelerating and you're worried about being rear ended? Put on the hazzards and turn the car off, it's not like it'll stop suddenly and you've already got brake lights on (I assume you're still on the brakes) so people behind you should be anticipating the slow down.

    I'm in agreement, either the guy's making it up, or has so many facts confused that it looks that way.
     
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  2. mad-dog-one

    mad-dog-one Prius Enthusiast

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    Suicide by Prius?
     
  3. Eoin

    Eoin Active Member

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    I'm surprised he didn't call a TV camera crew before calling the police.
     
  4. Eoin

    Eoin Active Member

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    I guess this is the end of the Prius smug alert.
     
  5. SageBrush

    SageBrush Senior Member

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    It can be *really* hard to think clearly in an emergency, or even a high pressure situation. One idea comes to mind, and blocks out everything else. Don't be too quick to judge this guy one way or the other.

    Certainly realize that lying on a couch thinking about what should have been done is just not a reasonable perspective to judge whether this story is BS.
     
  6. Eoin

    Eoin Active Member

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    But he was calm enough to dial the police on a cell phone.
     
  7. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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    Heck, I'd hate to ruin my 60mpg current tankfull average ... but if it'll get me on Oprah? Watch your local newscast after I leave work today at 1:15pst . . .

    ;)
     
  8. Qlara

    Qlara New Member

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    I won't disagree the Prius can be potentially a 'Runaway' car.....who knows?
    Any brand of cars can have such potential when turned on....

    My question is WHY NOW? (When Toyota was being the most vulnerable lately?)
    I see the liability for Toyota is endless like:
    Why do you speeding in residential? Because I'm driving a Toyota with stuck pedal!
    Why do you run a red-light? Because I'm driving a Toyota with gas pedal!
    Why do you DUI? Because I'm driving a TOYOTA!
     
  9. austingreen

    austingreen Senior Member

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    If you read the incident reports, its been going on in toyotas for at least 7 years. As problems are not fixed and cars age, incidents increase. Then again their is blood in the water, and when that happens sharks circle. You didn't hear about it when it was buried, but now its on the front page. Now that I own a toyota, I'm emailed all the articles from "concerned friends and relatives".

    There has always been driver error, there has always been unintended acceleration. The quicker these things are investigated and problems fixed the faster the media will turn away from it, and to the next story. Many of us suspect that there are electronics and/or software issues. If this hypothesis is correct you will continue to see incidences reported until problems are fixed.
     
  10. Eoin

    Eoin Active Member

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    I got a speeding ticket today on my way to work in my Prius. No matter how hard I tried I just couldn't make my car stick to the speed limit. I suspect electronics. Or the floor mat. Or the gas pedal. And don't get me started on the "break" issue.
     
  11. apriusfan

    apriusfan New Member

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    A voice of reason amongst all of the piling on. How many of the rest of the posters in this thread know beyond a shadow of a doubt that their friends/acquaintances/etc. who have never operated a Prius before they got into one (it was a loaner, if memory serves) would know how to shut one down if it suddenly started accelerating?
     
  12. apriusfan

    apriusfan New Member

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    Like what? We get letters telling us that there is a recall and to bring our car in for the repair. I am not sure what your question is about?
     
  13. austingreen

    austingreen Senior Member

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    You have to remember the prius is perfect, so the driver must be full of it. He said he had a letter and the dealer said his car was not affect. Toyota has never sent out letters on the wrong cars (Ok, I've gotten 2 in 3 months, but they weren't about the recall) and dealers would never be wrong about maintenance. [note sarcasm]
     
  14. DeanFL

    DeanFL 2010 owner - 1st Prius

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    Just got this on Fox news.com - OH OH!!!!

    FOXNews.com - Toyota Reportedly Recalls 2004-09 Priuses to Investigate Gas Pedal Issues

    Toyota Reportedly Recalls 2004-09 Priuses to Investigate Gas Pedal Issues

    Toyota reportedly says 2004-09 Priuses will be recalled to prevent pedal entrapment.


    Toyota Motor Corp. will recall 2004 through 2009 models of its Prius hybrid to prevent accelerator pedals from becoming trapped, The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday on its Web site.

    The recall follows an incident on Monday when the driver of a 2008 Prius called police when his car would not slow down on a San Diego County highway.

    James Sikes, 61, was driving on the busy Interstate 8 freeway outside San Diego when he noticed his car was starting to accelerate of its own accord, the California Highway Patrol said.

    The terrified motorist was helpless as the car hurtled out of control along the road at speeds of more than 90 miles per hour.

    However Sikes was able to call police, and officers using a loudspeaker talked him through the process of slowing down by using his emergency brake and then turning off the engine.

    Police then pulled in front of the car as it decelerated and rolled to a stop, then put the rear bumper of the squad car against the front of the Prius.

    The incident came as Toyota staged a technical demonstration on Monday to attack allegations that problems with its electronics may cause its cars to speed out of control.

    In recent months, Toyota has recalled more than 8 million vehicles worldwide due to acceleration issues.

    The latest incident in California was a chilling echo of an incident last August where off-duty California Highway Patrol Officer Mark Saylor was killed along with his wife, her brother and the Saylors' 13-year-old daughter when the accelerator of the Lexus ES350 they were in got stuck.

    Minutes later, the Toyota-manufactured vehicle slammed into the back of a sport utility vehicle at about 100mph, veered off the freeway, overturned and burst into flames. All four family members died.
     
  15. Politburo

    Politburo Active Member

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    The Lexus was a loaner. The Prius in question today was not.
     
  16. efusco

    efusco Moderator Emeritus
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    what the heck is a "recall to investigate"? What does that mean? They're going to bring in every single Prius and inspect the accelerator? We're not supposed to drive it until they finish an investigation?

    I want to see something from Toyota, how about a Press Release or something official that says what they want to actually do.
     
  17. apriusfan

    apriusfan New Member

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    While they are at it, they can check the brakes for drop-out and correct operation of the brake-throttle override. Mine (brake-throttle override) doesn't work as advertised and I am waiting for an appointment to get the car seen by the dealer, but there are a bunch of recalls in front of me.
     
  18. dropd

    dropd New Member

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    If you read the original wsj.com article that the Fox article is basing their report on, it's pretty clear that WSJ is just re-stating the pre-existing recall for floor mat issues, and saying that Toyota still intends to recall all priuses to fix the mats once they have decided what the fix will be.

    No news here, just re-statement of facts as loudly as possible to foment further hysteria.

     
  19. Politburo

    Politburo Active Member

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    That's what I figured. Someone was confusing the existing recall.. typical media.
     
  20. MicroMan

    MicroMan New Member

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    The thesis of this thread follows the "blame the driver" position that Toyota took until the crash of the CHP officer who's job was safety inspection and Toyota could no not longer assume this position. In the absence of more facts the "blame the driver" thesis is not supportable for yesterday's Prius event.

    There is also lots of Monday morning quarterbacking going on regarding what the driver should or should not have done under duress. It was not after the out-of-control acceleration problems were widely publicized that I paid close attention to the three "fail safe" methods for out-of-control acceleration (brake override, neutral and power). The neutral and power methods (having to hold the level or button for seconds) are not intuitive and not symmetric because under normal operation these actions are momentary. I understand why it's designed this way, but still it is not intuitive and something you can learn under duress.

    A fact that seems to be missed by this post is that the Prius gen 2 has brake override. The CHP officer could see smoke coming from the brakes and the car was speeding. This implies that the brake override failed. If this event is BS, please explain how rapid speed and smoking brakes can happen simultaneously.

    Regarding the driver's concern about turning off the car, note that historically if you turn off your car your steering column can lock and you loose steering. Because of this problem I was trained not to turn a car off while driving. It is not immediately obvious that the Prius steering column will not lockup after power down (it appears not) and this would certainly hard to think about if you are under duress.

    There is a non-zero possibility that this event is BS, but the BS assertion is not supported by the existing facts.
     
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