Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Fatal Toyota Corolla Crash

CWU international student killed in California car crash

ELLENSBURG, Wash. — A female Japanese student studying at Central Washington University died in a car accident in Southern California on Saturday, according to authorities. Three other female students in the vehicle, also of Japanese descent, sustained injuries.
According to a California Highway Patrol news release, a 22-year-old woman, later identified as Yoshiko Hirooka, was taken to Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs, Calif., where she ultimately died from her injuries. It is not known who was driving at the time or whether they were wearing seat belts.
At 1:48 p.m. Saturday, the driver and the three passengers were traveling southbound on California Route 111 about 60 miles north of the Mexican border. The report said the driver of the 2012 Toyota Corolla allowed it to travel to the left, cross the northbound lane, and travel off the paved road edge.
The Toyota overturned and rolled multiple times; some of the passengers were reportedly ejected.
Maki Tagawa, 22, Saya Sonoda, 20, and Aimi Hayashi, 19, were also taken to Desert Regional and listed as suffering major injuries, according to the patrol.
The news shocked the CWU community, particularly the English as a Second Language department. Sarah Norton is an ESL instructor who taught Hirooka for three quarters.
Norton described her as outgoing, friendly and bright, determined to master the English language.
“She came in at the lowest (English proficiency) level, but learned English quickly,” said Norton.
“She made a lot of friends and was learning the language fast.”
The class was devastated on Monday, Norton added.
Counselors have been made available.

Azar Hadi ·  San Francisco, California
Toyota/Lexus are known to accelerate with no input from the driver specially the Camry and Corolla. Why would she be driving so erratically? I hope someone notify the families of defective Toyota. Sudden unintended acceleration in Toyota and Lexus have killed and injured over 2000 in US alone and Toyota has admitted to cover up and lying to congress and defrauding consumers. Toyota will stay on probation in the next 3 years and will be monitored by an independent monitor. Boycott Toyota/Lexus.

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 fa...il-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.

With the increase in such serious vehicle crashes, there is a concerted effort to show driver "pedal misapplication" or a "medical condition" or some other reason for the incident...anything other than a vehicle defect. Investigators aren't scrutinizing the buggy electronic throttle control software or other conditions that can elicit a terrifying sudden unintended acceleration incident. They usually just examine the *mechanical* causes which tend to be just red herrings in these cases. Investigators simply don't have the expertise to find such electronic glitches. In fact, the staff at the NHTSA, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, do not have this very specialized training!

Think of it...the next step in electronically-controlled vehicles seems to be so-called "self-driving cars." Do YOU want to be in a such a vehicle when there is no evidence that strict safety standards, particularly in the throttle control system's software, have been adhered to? Will you just BLINDLY trust the automaker (criminally-investigated and nearly-prosecuted Toyota and soon-to-be GM and others?) to come through for you and your family's safety *on its own*?

A recently published Huffington Post article by Jonathan Handel,
How Do We Know Driverless Cars Are Safe? Google Says 'Trust Us'
Posted: 07/01/2014 7:23 pm EDT Updated: 07/02/2014 1:48 pm EDT speaks to these very issues and poses tough questions about Google's "driverless" vehicles. Educate yourself carefully before you put your faith in automakers who have knowingly lied to their customers and the government for decades. Study the issue of vehicle electronic sudden unintended acceleration and ask WHY we aren't seeing it addressed publicly. WHY is blame placed on the driver with little more than speculation about which pedal was used or with little more than an assumption on medical condition. This is being done *even when the drivers steadfastly cite a VEHICLE PROBLEM as the cause of the crash. Absence of proof is not proof of absence of a serious ELECTRONIC computer glitch or other electronically-caused SUA.

Charlene Blake