Auto manufacturing giant Toyota has issued another recall related to unintended acceleration problems in its vehicles, pushing the worldwide total of affected autos up to nine million. The most recent recall is for sticky acceleration pedals.
Vehicles equipped with these acceleration pedals may experience problems with unintended acceleration as parts in the throttle assembly wear prematurely, causing the pedal to stick and remain depressed even when foot pressure is removed.
Some sources blame up to 19 deaths from auto accidents on the overall problem of Toyota’s unintended acceleration, caused by a combination of sticky accelerators and poorly designed pedal / floor mat combinations. Vehicles involved in the latest U.S. recall are no longer being sold in dealerships across the country, a move made by Toyota to protect consumers.
Toyota’s problems with unintended acceleration have caught the attention of Washington lawmakers, who have called for a hearing on the matter. A hearing has tentatively been planned by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee for next week, and is titled “Toyota Gas Pedals: Is the Public At Risk?”
In addition, a hearing will be held on February 25th to hear consumer complaints about the issue. In preparation for the hearing committee chairman Henry A. Waxman has asked the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) for documentation from Toyota and the agency from when they first learned about the issue. Waxman and fellow committee members plan to investigate when each learned about the safety defects and what actions were taken and when to resolve them.