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Driver Error to Blame in Most of Toyota's "Unintended Acceleration" Cases: Report

As early leaked reports indicated, Toyota is being exonerated after Congress pushed the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to reveal the preliminary findings of its investigation into the cases of "unintended acceleration" of Toyota vehicles.

A Department of Transportation investigation of the black box recorders in 58 Toyota vehicles involved in "unintended acceleration" crashes has revealed that in 35 of those cases the brakes were never engaged. In nine other cases the brakes were only applied immediately before impact. In five additional cases no data was recorded, while in five more it was shown that the brakes were applied early on. One incident showed that both the accelerator and brake were pressed.

Toyota did place a recall for a faulty mechanical brake pedal and for millions of vehicles with what could be improperly installed floor mats – the later which is believed to be a cause of the crash in at least one of the 58 vehicles investigated by NHTSA.

"The limited research completed so far has not led to identification of safety defects other than sticking gas pedals or pedal entrapment," reads the report, clearly indicating that faulty vehicle electronics are not to blame.

Results of the NHTSA investigation are not final and the government agency warns that it may still take months to look over all the vehicles in question.

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