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Posts Tagged ‘toyota runaway cars’

Toyota Settles First of Wrongful Death Lawsuits

by on Jan.22, 2013

Toyota has begun to settle at least some wrongful injury and death claims rather than drag the fight out.

Toyota Motor Co. is pushing to settle a series of wrongful death lawsuits in which the plaintiffs appear to have a solid chance of proving to a jury that unintended acceleration-related design flaws contributed to the accidents.

The company maintains stuck floor mats and driver error are the reasons for vehicles unexpectedly surging out of control, while plaintiffs’ attorneys contend Toyota’s electronic throttle control system is to blame.

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In the first critical step, Toyota has elected to settle a wrongful death suit in Utah. The company said Thursday that it came to terms with the family of two people killed in a Utah crash that was set to go to trial next month and might have served as a test case for hundreds of other lawsuits that are pending.


Toyota Poised to Settle Injury and Death Lawsuits

Maker could put Unintended Acceleration issue behind.

by on Jan.16, 2013

Toyota may soon settle at least some wrongful injury and death claims rather than drag the fight out in court.

Toyota appears to be moving towards settling two high-profile unintended acceleration lawsuits in a bid to put the embarrassing issue to rest – and avoid having potentially damaging go before juries, according to a new report.

The maker announced a tentative, $1.2 billion settlement late last month with a group of owners who had sued alleging the unintended acceleration scandal had reduced the value of their vehicles. But that agreement – since given tentative approval by a federal job in Southern California – did not cover wrongful death and injury cases.

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At least some of those would be covered under a new settlement, said the Los Angeles Times, including two deaths in a horrific 2010 crash in Utah. The world’s largest automaker still faces more than 300 sudden acceleration lawsuits in state and federal courts.


Toyota Reaches $1 Bil Deal in Runaway Cars Case

Deal closes 100s of cases -- but 100s more still unresolved.

by on Dec.27, 2012

Lexus agreed to a record fine this month for delaying the recall of the RX crossover due to unintended acceleration issues.

Toyota Motor Co. has reached a more than $1 billion settlement intended to put an end to 100s of lawsuits stemming from the maker’s problems with unintended acceleration. But Toyota still faces a separate series of lawsuits from those who claim to have been injured by runaway vehicles.

The proposed settlement specifically covers lawsuits filed by owners who alleged that the value of their cars, trucks and crossovers had plummeted substantially as a result of the crisis triggered by a series of revelations and recalls that eventually involved more than 14 million Toyota products worldwide.

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The maker said it also will launch an extended warranty program covering 16 million current owners while also installing additional safety technology on 3.2 million of its vehicles. But in light of other recent recalls that have involved millions more Toyota products it remains unclear if the settlement will be enough to repair the Japanese giant’s once shining image.


Judge Frees Man Convicted In Fatal Toyota Crash

Prosecutors say they will not seek re-trial.

by on Aug.06, 2010

A judge freed the driver of this Camry after three years in prison. A new hearing suggested the accident could have been caused by defects in the 1996 Toyota Camry.

A Minnesota trial judge has ordered the release of a man who has claimed a runaway Toyota Camry led to a fatal accident.

Koua Fong Lee is a free man today after Ramsey County District Court Judge Joanne Smith ruled that new evidence supports his innocence, his attorney said, after the judge handed down the decision.

The ruling comes after a four-day hearing over a cruise control problem in the Toyota Camry that Mr. Lee was driving in a 2006 crash that claimed the lives of three people and resulted in his being sentenced to prison.

Ramsey County Attorney Susan Gaertner has said prosecutors would not seek a new trial. (See Retrial Requested in Minnesota Toyota Homicide)

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In June of 2006, Lee and his family were returning from Sunday church services when his his 1996 Camry accelerated to a reported 90 mph on a freeway off-ramp before rear-ending another vehicle stopped at a light.  Three members of the Adams family were killed, two others injured.

“I did everything I could to stop that vehicle and that vehicle didn’t stop,” Lee told a Minnesota TV news crew after his release from Lino Lakes prison.


Debate Over “Runaway” Toyotas Heating Up

Is there a bigger problem than floor mats?

by on Nov.03, 2009

They may be reliable, but there are growing concerns about the safety of Toyota vehicles, more than 3 million of which are facing a new recall.

They may be reliable, but there are growing concerns about the safety of Toyota vehicles, more than 3 million of which are facing a recall.

When Toyota announced the recall of more than 3 million vehicles, last month, the Japanese maker not only hoped to ensure the safety of its owners, but to put to rest concerns about the safety and quality of its vehicles.

This week, recall notices will go out advising motorists how to deal with the problem which, according to Toyota, involves driver floor mats that can jam the accelerator pedal and make it difficult to impossible to maintain control of the vehicle.

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But could there be another problem causing some Toyota products to surge out of control and, at times, race to speeds of up to 100 miles an hour?

That was clearly left open, today, when federal regulators issued a statement suggesting the 3.8 million vehicle recall is only an “interim measure, not a remedy.”

However, six times in the past six years NHTSA has undertaken a review of allegations of unintended acceleration on Toyota and Lexus vehicles, and six times the safety agency has found no vehicle based cause for the unwanted acceleration allegations.