Tuesday, November 11, 2014

TOYOTA crashes into Hopkinton building

[TOYOTA] Car crashes into Hopkinton building

By Norman Miller/Daily News Staff
MetroWest Daily News, Framingham, MA
Posted Nov. 11, 2014


This Toyota sedan crashed into 77 West Main St. in Hopkinton on Tuesday. Wicked Local/Daily News photo by Kathleen Culler

HOPKINTON – A West Main Street shopping plaza sustained minor damage after a Framingham man drove his car into it on Tuesday.

The driver of the Toyota was not identified as he and a passenger were taken to the MetroWest Medical Center in Framingham after the 12:37 p.m. crash for evaluation, Hopkinton Police Officer Patrick O’Brien said.

The cause of the crash is still not known.

“A person pulled into a parking spot at 77 West Main St., and the vehicle jumped the curb and came to rest against the building,” O’Brien said.

The address is a small shopping plaza that contains several businesses, including Dynasty Chinese Restaurant and Tri-County Medical Associates.

The town’s building inspector looked at the building after the crash and determined there was no structural damage. O’Brien said there appeared to be minor damage to some bricks.

O’Brien said the driver has not been cited, and police hope to interview him and the passenger later after they are released from the hospital.


Charlene McCarthy Blake

Toyota and Lexus are #1 in cases of sudden unintended acceleration and FORD is #2. The current unintended acceleration plaguing newer vehicles is the electronically-induced type. The engine throttle control systems depend on computer software to command them. Sometimes glitches occur...like in some of your other electronic devices...which can cause the command to be different than what you desire. The evidence of the glitch is often undetectable after the vehicle is restarted.

Unfortunately, the EDR (black box) is not always accurate as shown by expert Dr. Antony Anderson in his analysis of a 2012 Toyota Highlander. The EDR results indicated the driver was not braking when she was doing so. The EDR results are inconsistent.

The key to avoiding a horrific crash during a SUA event is whether or not the vehicle has an effective fail-safe in the event a glitch occurs. If it does not, as in the case of the glitch-prone Toyota ETCS-i, then the vehicle may become a runaway with an ineffective means to stop it. Unfortunately, the safety standards aren't as strict in automobiles as they are in airplanes. Some manufacturers have more effective fail-safes than others. In the case of Toyota, an embedded software expert, Michael Barr (see Oklahoma Bookout vs. Toyota court case involving a 2005 Camry) found that an electronic glitch could induce a SUA event. Another expert, Dr. Henning Leidecker, found that a SUA event could also be triggered by "tin whisker" formation, particularly in 2002-2006 Toyota Camry vehicles.

SUA events have been DEADLY for vehicle occupants as well as pedestrians and people in storefronts, buildings, and even homes. The numbers of such crashes are ever-increasing with the advent of the very complex ELECTRONIC throttle control systems.