Sunday, September 18, 2016

TOYOTA 4RUNNER dangling from parking garage, many thoughts

Please note: FACEBOOK has been removing these articles for 'VIOLATING COMMUNITY STANDARDS'....HUH? 

1 SUV dangling from parking garage, many thoughts

AUSTIN, Texas — It’s getting only more difficult to decide what qualifies as “news” versus what is just the usual flotsam and jetsam littering our social media streams, soon to be replaced by the next political argument or cute critter.
But when I glance up and notice a car dangling off the ninth floor of a parking garage, leaking gas into the alley below, I still have an innate sense that, yes, this moment might be worth more than a fleeting Instagram photo.
The only time I thought I might glimpse such a thing this summer was in the new Jason Bourne flick that I have yet to see.
But this real-life scene played out Friday. I was on vacation in Austin, the “Live Music Capital of the World.” I was tagging along with my wife on her work trip, where we extended our stay past her conference to explore a capital city that each of us had visited separately years ago.
On this Friday afternoon, I was strolling alone on Congress Avenue, the downtown artery that leads uphill to the majestic 303-foot-tall Capitol where the Legislature convenes biannually.
I glanced east down Sixth Street and noticed a crowd assembled on the sidewalk, plus the flashing red lights of emergency vehicles clogging the street while parked askew behind yellow tape. The crowd itself wouldn’t have looked out of place on Sixth had the hour been a little later, with waves of drunken frat boys on the prowl for cheap booze or exotic flavors of Voodoo Doughnuts, surrounded by the general cacophony of rock and blues bands.
But it turned out that there was a single focal point: a 2004 Toyota 4-Runner hanging from the parking garage. Its 24-year-old driver supposedly had been unable to brake and stop the SUV while parking. So it had burst through the wire barricade, flipped end over end and not plummeted into the alley only because a front wheel snagged on the cable, keeping it aloft.
I had just been walking down the street, minding my own business, and now felt like something of a hapless news magnet even when supposedly off the clock and out of state.
But this is the brain of a journalist, particularly a columnist who feasibly could end up writing about anything: We experience everyday life through a filter. The machinery always whirs in the back of our minds to determine if what we're observing might yield the next idea, trend or character.
I couldn’t help myself. I began snapping photos, shooting live video, talking to people. I met Karl Schmidt, a Jimmy John’s bicycle deliveryman who happened to be rolling through the alley at the precise moment of the accident.
“I heard the sound of the car slamming into the side of the building, and glass and metal fell from the sky," Schmidt said. "So I hit the brakes. Then I heard (the driver) give this blood-curdling scream. … I could see his arms were flailing and moving."
I arrived on the scene after the driver, fortunate that he had been buckled in, crawled out of the car and into the parking garage with the help of other passers-by who had sprinted up the stairs of the parking garage.
“It’s like ‘Jurassic Park,’” Schmidt said, “like where they're dangling, just hanging on by a tiny piece of metal.”
It also was a little spooky: The sight of people in a city’s downtown gazing up at potential disaster couldn’t help but set my mind reeling back to 9/11 on the verge of the somber 15th anniversary weekend. In 2001, I caught wind of the first plane crash into the World Trade Center via Carl Kassell's steady voice on NPR while en route to the Register newsroom in downtown Des Moines. Later that week I stood downtown with neighbors, colleagues, friends, fellow Americans as we gathered to share speeches and prayers.
It helped while in Austin to visit the LBJ Presidential Library and Museum, a beautiful and well-curated 10-story modernist landmark in the middle of the University of Texas campus just north of the Capitol. LBJ’s ‘60s tenure in the White House saw the historic tumult of the Cold War, civil rights, Vietnam and of course the JFK assassination. Soaking in the vivid multimedia of all those flash points, from the perspective of our nation having endured the chaos, felt like just what I needed.
Even if we keep falling short, at least we keep crawling forward.
I first traveled to Austin annually in the '90s on behalf of the Register as a music critic attending the South By Southwest (SXSW) music festival to scout new bands when the music industry still was living off the fat of the CD era. The Lone Star capital 15 years later in some ways was hard to recognize, its downtown skyline now a pincushion full of high-rise condos — including a 58-story giant Jenga set under construction that will be the tallest residential tower west of the Mississippi River.
This historically had been a city that carefully guarded its views of the Capitol dome, where the only height that’s really supposed to matter is the few feet that musicians climb to get on stage. At classic honky-tonk dive the Broken Spoke, for instance, musicians’ coiffed hair nearly brushes the sagging ceiling as they strum and sing.
The mantra in the Texas capital these days is “Keep Austin Weird,” a city afraid of losing the distinct flavor that made it famous. I sort of feel like Des Moines is at the stage where we’re just getting weird, just taking on more of a signature character that some day we can complain bitterly that we've lost.
Thus one dangling SUV turned into a jumbled metaphor for my journalist brain that apparently finds it hard to relax.
When I realized that the vehicle wasn't going to crash into the alley below but be lowered safely inch by inch, I stopped littering my Facebook friends' feeds with the live video and moved on down the street to the next honky tonk.

There is a BIG hidden secret in the auto's called ELECTRONIC sudden unintended acceleration! I thought that was just about FLOOR MATS and sticky pedals, or "driver error," right? That's certainly what TOYOTA would like you to continue to believe, BUT DON'T!

These ultra-complex new engines are completely computer driven. Software is needed to control the throttle system. You THINK you are giving gas when you press the accelerator, but you are only SUGGESTING this to the computer. In electronic SUA cases, the throttle software may be glitch-prone and NOT do as you wish.

What happens then? Well, the glitch may (and has for countless SUA victims) result in an OPEN THROTTLE situation. The brakes become INEFFECTIVE in these situations and crashes into storefronts, buildings, and homes have resulted.

What does the automaker say? They hook the vehicles up to the computer and declare NOTHING WRONG! They cite the EDR which has erroneous data and say YOU were NOT braking. They point the finger at you based on AGE, GENDER, MEDICAL history, prescription meds, etc. YOU name it, they've TRIED it!

Get the picture? And you THOUGHT the GM issue was big? Think again! This cover-up of ELECTRONIC SUA is scandalous and very well-orchestrated.

Why even a WHI
STLEBLOWER has been legally harassed by Toyota as it does NOT want her Toyota internal docs posted online anymore. The automaker wants to intimidate and SILENCE her. It doesn't want the PUBLIC involved, for goodness sake!

Charlene McCarthy Blake
Brett Lorenzen
There's also a plethora of idiots texting and half-driving, who make stupid mistakes. If you are afraid of computers, put the Internet down and back away slowly.
LikeReply2Sep 15, 2016 9:16am

Charlene McCarthy Blake
Brett Lorenzen That isn't what happened here. Far from it. The throttle control software is not strictly regulated as in the airline industry. Experts have uncovered serious flaws in the Toyota embedded software that can lead to a deadly TAKE OFF. With some of the push button ignition Toyota vehicles, it takes too long to turn the vehicle off. The unintended acceleration episode can be just seconds in duration with a horrific crash at the end. Toyota owners have every reason to be concerned; some currently first hand what can occur!
LikeReplySep 15, 2016 1:02pm
Charlene McCarthy Blake
Let's distinguish between "driver error" and "driver TERROR," shall we? One is a mistake made by the driver that results in a fender bender or accident otherwise. The other is the experience of being catapulted forward at rapid speed in just a few seconds time and with increased force due to an ELECTRONIC anomaly than has been to date identified by several experts in the field! Drivers in "driver TERROR" have NO control over the throttle and an essentially ineffective braking system as a consequence of the sheer power of this DEADLY scenario!

Charlene McCarthy Blake
According to NASA expert, Dr. Henning Leidecker, some Toyota's can grow "tin whiskers" within certain electronic components. This can result in short circuits which can lead to yet another type of electronically-induced SUA event. Dr. Leidecker and associates actually DID FIND and study a case of "tin whiskers" found within the accelerator pedal assembly; rendering a Toyota vehicle UNDRIVEABLE.

Dr. Leidecker suggests driving the affected Toyota vehicles is "a game of Russian roulette." Dr. Leidecker is most concerned about 2002-2006 Toyota Camrys with their potential to grow "tin whiskers." H...See More
Charlene McCarthy Blake
Singer/songwriter, Kris Kitko did an AWESOME job on her YouTube video, "Toyota Where Are Ya?" The video was directed at Toyota regarding her own real world experience with Toyota SUA, sudden unintended acceleration. With her satirical approach, she completely destroyed the Toyota and NHTSA myth about SUA, namely “pedal misapplication” by drivers. Unfortunately, Kris Kitko’s YouTube video is no longer available for viewing online.

In the wake of the NHTSA/DOJ $1.2 BILLION settlement following a CRIMINAL investigation, Kris should be encouraged to use her finely-honed musical 
skills to do a sequel to her first Toyota SUA YouTube video. The U.S. Federal Government allowed Toyota “deferred prosecution” in this settlement provided it follow the steps outlined in the terms of the agreement. No one…not one single Toyota executive…is going to serve any prison time for knowingly withholding evidence that could have saved many lives and ensured public safety on the roads.Toyota ADMITTED that it LIED to both the Toyota customers and the government.

Michael Barr, renowned embedded systems expert, after studying Toyota’s ETCS-I far longer than NASA did, found the existence of faults in the software which could lead to a real-world, potentially-catastrophic SUA event with a number of potentially ineffective failsafes. Imagine flying down the road in a Toyota with no functioning brake override to exit a software task-death! Isn’t that a bit like being on a high-speed roller coaster and having the track fail to keep you on? And want to know the most SHOCKING part? Toyota reportedly didn't have a copy of the code in their OWN monitor chip! Michael Barr and company had to SHOW them! Can we just say, “Scary!”

Toyota cites that there is no electronic cause for SUA in its vehicles based on the short-duration investigations by NHTSA and NASA. Michael Barr and other experts have shown these studies to be scientifically seriously flawed. First, the ETCS-I software investigation was extremely limited. Only a SMALL FRACTION of the embedded software was 
tested by NASA.

Secondly, Toyota misrepresented the presence of EDAC RAM (error detection and correction random access memory) while indications of this issue were apparently redacted in the original NHTSA report. This misled NASA into NOT LOOKING INTO a number of potential sources of failure – which they may otherwise might have.

Charlene McCarthy Blake