Today, July 22nd, started the proceeding which will determine if Toyota should be held responsible for the deaths caused by the sudden unintended acceleration in its vehicles.
The first case to go on trial is the one connected to Noriko Uno, 66, who died after her car unexpectedly accelerated to speeds reaching 100 mph and ultimately crushed into a telephone pole and a tree. The unintended acceleration issue involved Toyota in numerous lawsuits, recalls of millions of vehicles and settlements.
“Toyota decided to make safety an option instead of a standard on their vehicles,” said attorney Garo Mardirossian, who is representing Uno’s husband and son. “They decided to save a few bucks, and by doing so, it cost lives.”
The Japanese automaker reported that Uno’s Camry did not have any defect and blamed the crash on the acceleration which might have got stock, the floor mats trapping the pedal and also driver’s error. The automaker agreed to pay $1 billion to reach settlements on the lawsuits in which customers said that the value of their vehicles was affected by this issue.
According to the lawsuits, the unintended acceleration was caused by a defect in Toyota’s electronic throttle control system, which caused the vehicles to unexpectedly surge. Toyota denied allegations and the NHTSA and NASA did not find any evidence about such electronic problems.
“We are confident the evidence will show that a brake override system would not have prevented this accident and that there was no defect in Mrs. Uno’s vehicle,” the automaker said in a statement about the upcoming trial.
Source: The Detroit News