2008 Prius Cruise Control Resume Led to Runaway

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Old 05 Nov 2009, 09:44 pm   #1 (permalink)
Hachiroku ハチロク
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Default Re: 2008 Prius Cruise Control Resume Led to Runaway

On Thu, 05 Nov 2009 21:05:22 -0800, john wrote:

> But that's not what the Waltons believe. The couple from Boiling Springs,
> N.C., were driving to Murrells Inlet, S.C., Oct. 9 when their 2008 Toyota
> Prius surged on a marshy four-lane highway.
>
> It all started when, after slowing down through a small coastal town,
> Walton said he hit the resume-acceleration button on his cruise control.
>
> "All of a sudden, we were flying and I hadn't touched the pedal," said
> Grover, a retired property manager.


I'm certainly not the world's smartest person, but I know enough to
TURN OFF THE CRUISE CONTROL WHEN I GET OFF THE HIGHWAY.

A lot of driving is just plain Common Sense.
A lot of people just plain don't have it.



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Old 05 Nov 2009, 11:05 pm   #2 (permalink)
john
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Default 2008 Prius Cruise Control Resume Led to Runaway

http://www.freep.com/article/2009110...yota-accidents

Some don't buy mats at fault for Toyota accidents
N.C. couple say their car sped, caught fire

BY GREG GARDNER
FREE PRESS BUSINESS WRITER

Toyota Motor Corp.'s campaign to get customers to remove or replace
floor mats, which the Japanese automaker is blaming for unintended
acceleration cases, isn't convincing to some of its drivers, such as
Grover and Barbara Walton.

More than 300 complaints have been filed with federal regulators about
the problem, including at least six involving fatalities, and Toyota
says the floor mats are to blame.

But that's not what the Waltons believe. The couple from Boiling
Springs, N.C., were driving to Murrells Inlet, S.C., Oct. 9 when their
2008 Toyota Prius surged on a marshy four-lane highway.

It all started when, after slowing down through a small coastal town,
Walton said he hit the resume-acceleration button on his cruise
control.

"All of a sudden, we were flying and I hadn't touched the pedal," said
Grover, a retired property manager.

He said he hit the brakes, which slowed the car. But when Walton
released the brake pedal, he said his Prius surged again.

"Before my husband could safely get the car off the road, he had
ridden the brakes so hard to avoid an accident that flames were coming
from behind both front wheels where the brakes had caught fire,"
Barbara Walton said.

After exiting the car, Grover scooped up several hands full of sand
and threw it on the brake pads until the flames went out. They called
a Toyota dealership in Myrtle Beach to tow it. The Waltons picked up
their car three days later and drove home.

While Toyota is defending lawsuits from people whose spouses or loved
ones were killed in cases of unintended acceleration, the Waltons were
not injured and said they have not sued.

But they are convinced that a floor mat did not cause their perilous
experience.

The car did have a rubberized all-weather floor mat that was fastened
to the underlying hooks and was so firm that Walton said he could not
bend it enough to interfere with the accelerator. He removed it after
last month's incident.

Toyota executive Bob Carter said Monday that the National Highway
Traffic Safety Administration had closed six investigations into
complaints of Toyota or Lexus vehicles that accelerated faster than
the driver intended. All six cases, he said, concluded with NHTSA
finding no defect other than an unsecured or incompatible floor mat.

One of those complaints was filed by Jeffrey Pepski of Plymouth,
Minn., who last April reported unintended acceleration in his 2007
Lexus ES350. NHTSA has received 64 similar complaints for 2007 Lexus
models.

On Oct. 29, NHTSA concluded 50 of those incidents, including all 15
cases in which someone was injured, were caused by floor mat
interference. It denied Pepski's request for further investigation,
but said that its decision does not constitute a finding ... that a
safety-related defect does not exist."

NHTSA reiterated that to the Free Press on Tuesday.

"Removal of the mats is simply an interim measure," said NHTSA
spokeswoman Karen Aldana. "NHTSA will be discussing with Toyota what
the appropriate vehicle remedy or remedies will be."

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Old 06 Nov 2009, 06:47 am   #3 (permalink)
fred
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Default Re: 2008 Prius Cruise Control Resume Led to Runaway

=?iso-2022-jp?q?Hachiroku_=1B$B%O%A%m%=2F=1B=28B?= <Trueno@e86.GTS> wrote
in newsan.2009.11.06.03.44.33.372604@e86.GTS:

> On Thu, 05 Nov 2009 21:05:22 -0800, john wrote:
>
>> But that's not what the Waltons believe. The couple from Boiling
>> Springs, N.C., were driving to Murrells Inlet, S.C., Oct. 9 when their
>> 2008 Toyota Prius surged on a marshy four-lane highway.
>>
>> It all started when, after slowing down through a small coastal town,
>> Walton said he hit the resume-acceleration button on his cruise
>> control.
>>
>> "All of a sudden, we were flying and I hadn't touched the pedal," said
>> Grover, a retired property manager.

>
> I'm certainly not the world's smartest person, but I know enough to
> TURN OFF THE CRUISE CONTROL WHEN I GET OFF THE HIGHWAY.
>
> A lot of driving is just plain Common Sense.
> A lot of people just plain don't have it.
>

Held down the brake pedal until they caught fire too. Sounds to me like
this Toyota "problem" is just Darwin in action.


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Old 06 Nov 2009, 06:51 am   #4 (permalink)
C. E. White
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Default Re: 2008 Prius Cruise Control Resume Led to Runaway


"Hachiroku ????" <Trueno@e86.GTS> wrote in message
newsan.2009.11.06.03.44.33.372604@e86.GTS...
> On Thu, 05 Nov 2009 21:05:22 -0800, john wrote:
>
>> But that's not what the Waltons believe. The couple from Boiling
>> Springs,
>> N.C., were driving to Murrells Inlet, S.C., Oct. 9 when their 2008
>> Toyota
>> Prius surged on a marshy four-lane highway.
>>
>> It all started when, after slowing down through a small coastal
>> town,
>> Walton said he hit the resume-acceleration button on his cruise
>> control.
>>
>> "All of a sudden, we were flying and I hadn't touched the pedal,"
>> said
>> Grover, a retired property manager.

>
> I'm certainly not the world's smartest person, but I know enough to
> TURN OFF THE CRUISE CONTROL WHEN I GET OFF THE HIGHWAY.


The post says they hit resume after they passed through the small
coastal town. I assume they were on the highway.



Once I turn on my cruise control, I don't turn it off (it does reset
to off when I cut off the car). The little doohickey that Toyota uses
for the cruise control takes some getting use to. I am not even sure
how to cut it off. It took me a few minutes just to figure out how to
turn it on the first time I drove the SO's RAV4. I also wonder about
the value of turning it off if this is a software problem. The cruise
control switches are not actul hard switches like in the old days.
They are just signaling devices that tell the computer you want the
cruise control off. If the software is hosed up, that might not be any
better than hitting the brakes. I guess I am starting to understand
why Ford but that stupid hydraulic switch in the brake circuit....



I wonder if this isn't more of a panic problem than an actual car
problem. Here is what I think may have happened...



The driver hit the resume button at a fairly low speed compared to the
previous set point. If his Prius cruise control react anything like my
SO's RAV4 (or my older Sister's RAV4) the computer tried to accelerate
the car back up to the set point speed as quickly as possible (the
SO's RAV4 reacts violently in this situation). When the car jerked and
started accelerating hard to get back to the set point speed, the
driver reacted improperly because he thought the car was running wild.
Actually the computer was trying to get back to the old set point as
quickly as possible. Because the driver thought the car was running
wild he jammed on the brakes. He did get his foot on the brake pedal,
but he also inadvertently pressed on the accelerator pedal as well. So
while he thought he was braking hard, he was also pressing on the
accelerator. At that point he was sure the car was running away and he
pressed even harder, resulting in the situation described in the post.
I don't know how the pedals are arranged in the Prius, but in the RAV4
this is something that can happen to someone with large feet. The
pedals ae very close together and if you are not careful you can end
up pressing both at once. And it is not just Toyotas that have this
problem. An Expedition I owned had exactly the same problem...I could
easily press both pedals at once in a panic situation.



This is starting to look like a lot of other media driven frenzies
(Audi 5000, Chey truck gas tanks, Explorer Tires, etc.). The media
over hypes the story, jumps to some erroneous conclusions, and people
start crawling out of the woodwork claiming they have that problem
also. And then the trial lawyer et involved and things go to s*%t. I
already see Clarance Ditlow name in some articles on this subject. He
is about as crooked a snake as ever slithered out from under a rock.



I have complained about how jerky and violent the RAV4 cruise control
can be. Toyota has a service bulletin that addresses the concern. So
far I have not been able to get the SO to take her RAV4 in to get it
reprogrammed. I was talking to my sister about this whole cruise
control concern the other night. I mentioned that I tried to get the
SO to take in her RAV4 to get the cruise control reprogrammed. My
sister said she didn't need to take hers in because the cruise control
worked OK. I then mentioned how the SO's reacted in some situations
(the violent acceleration) and she said, "oh yeah mine does that
too"...and so she is going to take hers in to get it looked after. It
is my thought that this violent reaction by the cruise control to
resume under some conditions causes people to react improperly.
Interestingly my other sister's RAV4 with the V6 does not react the
same at all.



Ed



> A lot of driving is just plain Common Sense.
> A lot of people just plain don't have it.
>
>
>



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Old 06 Nov 2009, 07:38 am   #5 (permalink)
Hachiroku
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Default Re: 2008 Prius Cruise Control Resume Led to Runaway

C. E. White wrote:
> "Hachiroku ????" <Trueno@e86.GTS> wrote in message
> newsan.2009.11.06.03.44.33.372604@e86.GTS...
>> On Thu, 05 Nov 2009 21:05:22 -0800, john wrote:
>>
>>> But that's not what the Waltons believe. The couple from Boiling
>>> Springs,
>>> N.C., were driving to Murrells Inlet, S.C., Oct. 9 when their 2008
>>> Toyota
>>> Prius surged on a marshy four-lane highway.
>>>
>>> It all started when, after slowing down through a small coastal
>>> town,
>>> Walton said he hit the resume-acceleration button on his cruise
>>> control.
>>>
>>> "All of a sudden, we were flying and I hadn't touched the pedal,"
>>> said
>>> Grover, a retired property manager.

>> I'm certainly not the world's smartest person, but I know enough to
>> TURN OFF THE CRUISE CONTROL WHEN I GET OFF THE HIGHWAY.

>
> The post says they hit resume after they passed through the small
> coastal town. I assume they were on the highway.
>
>
>
> Once I turn on my cruise control, I don't turn it off (it does reset
> to off when I cut off the car). The little doohickey that Toyota uses
> for the cruise control takes some getting use to. I am not even sure
> how to cut it off. It took me a few minutes just to figure out how to
> turn it on the first time I drove the SO's RAV4. I also wonder about
> the value of turning it off if this is a software problem. The cruise
> control switches are not actul hard switches like in the old days.
> They are just signaling devices that tell the computer you want the
> cruise control off. If the software is hosed up, that might not be any
> better than hitting the brakes. I guess I am starting to understand
> why Ford but that stupid hydraulic switch in the brake circuit....
>
>
>
> I wonder if this isn't more of a panic problem than an actual car
> problem. Here is what I think may have happened...
>
>
>
> The driver hit the resume button at a fairly low speed compared to the
> previous set point. If his Prius cruise control react anything like my
> SO's RAV4 (or my older Sister's RAV4) the computer tried to accelerate
> the car back up to the set point speed as quickly as possible (the
> SO's RAV4 reacts violently in this situation). When the car jerked and
> started accelerating hard to get back to the set point speed, the
> driver reacted improperly because he thought the car was running wild.
> Actually the computer was trying to get back to the old set point as
> quickly as possible. Because the driver thought the car was running
> wild he jammed on the brakes. He did get his foot on the brake pedal,
> but he also inadvertently pressed on the accelerator pedal as well. So
> while he thought he was braking hard, he was also pressing on the
> accelerator. At that point he was sure the car was running away and he
> pressed even harder, resulting in the situation described in the post.
> I don't know how the pedals are arranged in the Prius, but in the RAV4
> this is something that can happen to someone with large feet. The
> pedals ae very close together and if you are not careful you can end
> up pressing both at once. And it is not just Toyotas that have this
> problem. An Expedition I owned had exactly the same problem...I could
> easily press both pedals at once in a panic situation.
>
>
>
> This is starting to look like a lot of other media driven frenzies
> (Audi 5000, Chey truck gas tanks, Explorer Tires, etc.). The media
> over hypes the story, jumps to some erroneous conclusions, and people
> start crawling out of the woodwork claiming they have that problem
> also. And then the trial lawyer et involved and things go to s*%t. I
> already see Clarance Ditlow name in some articles on this subject. He
> is about as crooked a snake as ever slithered out from under a rock.
>
>
>
> I have complained about how jerky and violent the RAV4 cruise control
> can be. Toyota has a service bulletin that addresses the concern. So
> far I have not been able to get the SO to take her RAV4 in to get it
> reprogrammed. I was talking to my sister about this whole cruise
> control concern the other night. I mentioned that I tried to get the
> SO to take in her RAV4 to get the cruise control reprogrammed. My
> sister said she didn't need to take hers in because the cruise control
> worked OK. I then mentioned how the SO's reacted in some situations
> (the violent acceleration) and she said, "oh yeah mine does that
> too"...and so she is going to take hers in to get it looked after. It
> is my thought that this violent reaction by the cruise control to
> resume under some conditions causes people to react improperly.
> Interestingly my other sister's RAV4 with the V6 does not react the
> same at all.
>
>
>
> Ed



DAMN! There's a reason we have BUS SERVICE in this country!!!

Hitting the brake should have shut off the CC function. Sounds to me
like this guy should hand in his license or go for some more driver's
training.

The Toyota CC does not clear the memory under 30 MPH like it used to,
because it is now a computer based function rather than a vacuum based
system. I noticed this with my Scion. If you hit RESUME, even
accidently, this happens. There is a button on the END of the stalk to
turn the CC off/on. When getting down from 70MPH, I either turn the
switch OFF, or set the CC for ~25 MPH, or BOTH.

I have been doing this since I bought the car three years ago.
Merely because I did not want to be involved in a 'runaway' situation.

All Toyota has to do is electronically cancel the resume function once a
certain speed is reached, or so many MPH under the set speed.







>
>
>
>> A lot of driving is just plain Common Sense.
>> A lot of people just plain don't have it.
>>
>>
>>

>
>

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Old 06 Nov 2009, 03:25 pm   #6 (permalink)
fred
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Default Re: 2008 Prius Cruise Control Resume Led to Runaway

=?UTF-8?B?SGFjaGlyb2t1IOODj+ODgeODreOCrw==?= <Trueno@e86.GTS> wrote in
news:hd18sd$ddq$1@news.eternal-september.org:

> C. E. White wrote:
>> "Hachiroku ????" <Trueno@e86.GTS> wrote in message
>> newsan.2009.11.06.03.44.33.372604@e86.GTS...
>>> On Thu, 05 Nov 2009 21:05:22 -0800, john wrote:

>>

> DAMN! There's a reason we have BUS SERVICE in this country!!!
>
> Hitting the brake should have shut off the CC function. Sounds to me
> like this guy should hand in his license or go for some more driver's
> training.
>


Yes, without any actual investigative facts, it's starting to look to me
like there was serious problems with the cruise control. After market self
install is the phrase that comes to mind. Hardly a Toyota problem.

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