Now that both the NHTSA and Toyota have completed their recreation of the Harrison, NY Toyota crash, maybe we can move on and stop seeing Prius’ on the news every single night.
Unlike the California crash, which appears to be a case of “let’s capitalize on Toyota’s bad publicity to get a free new car”, the Harrison crash is nothing more than good old fashioned driver error. Data retrieved from the wrecked Prius shows that the throttle was pinned wide open, while the brakes were never applied. Since most sane and non-suicidal people don’t drive full throttle into rock walls, we’ll chalk this one up to driver error, even though the local police chief insists his department isn’t yet done with the investigation.
You know what really scares me? Americans have already demonstrated that we can’t handle cars with proper gas and brake pedal placement, as was proven by the whole Audi unintended acceleration debacle back in the 1980s. If we keep this up, all cars sold in America will have a one-foot gap between the accelerator and the brake so you can’t confuse the two. Worse yet, we’ll get some ridiculous voiced warning that requires confirmation, like, “Hello, driver. You seem to have stepped on the accelerator rather abruptly. Did you intend to do this, or was your movement accidental?”
God help us as a society. If we can’t even distinguish between gas and brake pedals, we’re doomed.