Sudden Unintended Acceleration
Since the early 1980s there have been reports and incidents of vehicles suddenly and without warning accelerating out of control, frequently causing accidents and injuries. The earliest reports resulted in a huge recall of Audi 5000s from the 1982-87 model years, a defect which was linked to six deaths and nearly 700 accidents.
Sudden unintended acceleration (SUA) presents a significant risk of collisions or other accidents when it occurs, primarily because the operator of the vehicle is not expecting the unusual phenomenon and does not have time to react quickly enough to prevent an incident.
Incidents of Interest
Throughout the last three decades there have been hundreds of recorded incidents in which vehicles suddenly and unexpectedly accelerated, resulting in a substantial number of needless accidents, injuries, and fatalities. The following are some of the most notable issues which have arisen:
- 1988 – According to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report, many 1986 Honda Accords had a defective speed control component which caused SUA accidents.
- 1997 – Diane Sawyer reported on Dateline about Jeep Cherokees and Grand Cherokees involved in SUA incidents.
- 2006 – Ford was forced to recall the 2004 Mustang Cobra after it was demonstrated that the accelerator pedal stuck in the fully depressed position.
- 2010 – After widespread publicity and outcry about SUA incidents, Toyota recalled several of its most popular models.
The common defense that manufacturers used when reports of SUA arise is that the incident was a result of driver error. While many cases do, in fact, result from things like pedal confusion, manufacturers have been repeatedly forced to recall vehicles due to clear mechanical problems.
If you have been injured in an accident caused by sudden unintended acceleration, you may be able to pursue financial compensation from the negligent auto manufacturer. To learn more about your legal rights and options, contact the experienced and knowledgeable Racine car accident attorneys of Habush Habush & Rottier, S.C. at 800-242-2874.