After a ten month investigation involving the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and NASA, the results are in: Toyota’s unintended acceleration problems were mechanical, not electronic in nature. The agencies examined some 280,000 lines of software code and ran an extensive battery of tests to reach the conclusion that floor mat entrapment and sticking accelerator pedals were the sole causes of legitimate unintended acceleration cases. Human error, or “pedal confusion”, was found to be the cause in many of the incidents.
Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, who had been critical of Toyota from the onset of the investigation, seemed to validate Toyota’s claims with his statements. The Detroit News quoted LaHood as saying, “The jury is back. The verdict is in. There is no electronic-based cause for unintended high-speed acceleration in Toyotas. Period. Our conclusion — that Toyota’s problems were mechanical, not electrical — come after one of the most exhaustive, thorough and intensive research efforts ever undertaken.”
Toyota released their own findings last July, and their results mirrored the results of the NASA tests. As with the Audi 5000, when the mechanical and electronic causes are ruled out, the only thing left is operator error.
Source: The Detroit News