Expert finds flaw in Toyota “fail safe” electronic system; explains accelerations

Legal news for product liability attorneys. A design flaw was found in Toyota’s electronic system, which is linked to runaway cars.

Product liability attorneys alert- An expert found a design flaw in Toyota’s that could explain the sudden acceleration cases.

West Palm Beach, FL—A Southern Illinois University automotive technology professor may have found a flaw in Toyota’s “fail safe” electronic acceleration system design, which may explain the unattended accelerations. Toyota’s onboard computer doesn’t record an error code when a motorist experiences sudden acceleration, which undercuts many Toyota executives statements that the vehicle’s electronics are not to blame, as reported by ABC News.

Dave Gilbert, a professor at Southern Illinois University automotive technology department found a design flaw in the electronic system, which prevents the vehicles onboard computer from “detecting and stopping certain short circuits that can trigger sudden speed surges.” As a result of the onboard computers failure to detecting and stopping the short circuits, the computer does not record an error code; and doesn’t activate the system that is designed to shut off the vehicle’s power and put it into “limp home” mode. Therefore there is no way to trace back to the original issue after an incident of sudden acceleration, which has led Toyota officials to continue dismissing accusations of electronic malfunctions. A Safety Research & Strategies advocate stated, “The system is fallible, in fact, it’s got some really troubling design strategies that are employed by Toyota that appear to be outside the norm. And their system clearly has design strategy that has a very slim margin of safety.”

Gilbert’s test and demonstrations are showing what could occur in everyday life because of corrosion, moisture and the manufacturing imperfections. The problem was discovered in four Toyota models—Lexus, Tundra, Avalon and Matrix. Toyota has maintained that driver error, sticky gas pedals or pedals trapped by floor mats are the reasons for the countless number of reported sudden acceleration incidences. The president of Toyota USA has stated that he was “confident” that Toyota vehicles had no electronic problem, even going as far as placing full-page advertisements in newspapers making the same claim.

Legal News Reporter: Nicole Howley-Legal news for product liability lawyers.

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