• Jun 11th 2010 at 6:01PM
  • 67
Toyota may be the brand we all associate with unintended acceleration these days, but complaints of runaway vehicles have been lodged against nearly every automaker under the sun. A Kentucky woman recently received a firsthand lesson in that fact when her 2008 Chevrolet Equinox allegedly accelerated to 90 mph for over 20 minutes. State Troopers were eventually able to help bring the SUV to a stop without incident.
According to Louisville television station WLKY, Marlene Taylor was driving with her twin daughters on I-64 when she set the cruise control for the drive home. Instead of sticking close to the speed limit, the vehicle continued to speed up until it reached 90 mph. Taylor called #911 through the vehicle's OnStar system and was told to attempt to shift the vehicle into neutral, set the emergency brake and attempt to physically lift the accelerator pedal with her foot. According to the account, none of that worked.

Troopers eventually brought the vehicle to a stop by pulling in front of Taylor and slowing down. Attorney William McNurry now represents Taylor and says that he and his client simply want General Motors to responsibly investigate the scenario. At this time, Taylor has not filed a lawsuit. You can check out the full story and #911 call on WLKY by clicking here. Thanks for the tip, Steven!

[Source: WLKY]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago

      While I am not trying to make light of the situation, at the same time I have a hard time thinking that these people aren't idiots. Just put the damn car in Neutral and coast to the side of the road.
        • 5 Years Ago

        It says "according to the account". How can you say "in fact"?


        You're correct in that people should know how to handle this situation. After all the publicity that was made about Toyota, this isn't a new issue. It was taught in my driver's education course in the 1990s...I would hope it still is.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @ inv4zn

        yes I am trollin' and of course what people SAY to cover-up their mess-ups is always 100% truthful. Just like that old guy with the Prius that SAID his car was out of control, only then to find out later that his business had just failed, and I think he had recently filed for bankruptcy and was looking for a quick buck.

        This lady says that the car accelerated to 90 MPH for 20 minutes. 20 minutes is a long ass time and she would have covered around 30 miles in that time frame. Supposedly out of control for 20 minutes, covering 30 miles and she didn't hit anything?? Again, I am not trying to make light of a situation if it's real, but that sounds like BS to me. Car and Driver ran an article about out of control cars and what to do, and they recommendation was to pop it in neutral and slam on the brakes. The brakes on any car will over-power the engine.

        Oh yeah, and this is one of the reasons that car companies are pushing to install black-boxes into newer cars. So many electronics that control different systems on a car that they want some record of the events of a crash to analyze.

        • 5 Years Ago
        I've read the article again and am now compelled to agree that the wording is open to interpretation.

        She was told to do so, but you're right - we don't know if she actually did (or even knew how.)

        I think it's safe to agree that it's a situation that should happen regardless of automaker fault due to complexity or driver fault due to idiocy...runaway cars are dangerous regardless of cause.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I'm a bit confused as to how shifting the car into neutral could not work
        • 5 Years Ago
        While I'm not going to call this woman a flat out liar (who knows, maybe she really was in a situation that none of us could have handled better) I find it hard pressed to believe that 1. As you guys have said, the put it into neutral didn't work and that 2. Why 90 mph? An untethered Equinox could do much faster than that, unless cruise control really was particular about what speed it wanted to get stuck in. Maybe if the car got stuck at the speed she set it to, but it supposedly "continued up to speed until it hit 90 mph". And lastly, 3. Brakes anyone? I don't even mean the handbrake/E brake. Cars from the 90s have the technology to cancel out cruise control when you push down the brakes, and even then, there's the brakes over throttle issue which almost every car out there (shy of those hp monsters) can over power the motor with the brakes. Anyways, the whole situation is one big skeptical "Uh huh" with raised eyebrow. I look forward to see how GM responds.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Considering that Every AT made since the eighties has a brake interlock between D and 3, and another between N and R, but not one between D and N, it stands to reason that she didn't try to goddamned hard to shift it into neutral. Stephen Hawking could have gotten this car into neutral.
        • 5 Years Ago
        If you had read the article instead of trolling, you would see that she did in fact try to put the car in neutral, and try the emergency brake, as well as pulling up the gas pedal by force.

      • 5 Years Ago
      Lawyer up! It's the American way!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Damn Toyota's!!!!!!!!!
      • 5 Years Ago
      It's kind of like Texas Instruments was very VERY rarely brought up in the mainstream news when they were blasting Ford about the cruise control switches. Guess who built them? Oh yeah, Texas Instruments.

      That's why the mass majority of people out there put 100% blame on the car maker.
      • 5 Years Ago
      so whos up for trying to set the cross country speed record? we can get a new chevy ZR1, set the cruise control for 190mph and when we see a cop with a radar gun, call onstar and tell them our car is accelerating uncontrollably. then when the cop gets behind us (maybe not likely at 190), we can call 911 and say the car wont stop accelerating, so when they do finally somehow get us to a stop, we don't get a ticket, and we can sue GM.

      and just in case the cruise doesn't set at high speeds like that, we can carry a nice rubber floor mat and set it over the factory floor mat and blame it on that as "jamming the accelerator pedal".

      • 5 Years Ago
      An Equinox isn't exactly a technological marvel. It has a standard slushbox auto that when shifted into neutral, goes into neutral. Press the brake, cruise control turns off. Hit Cancel, cruise control turns off. Ignore everything somebody tells you to do, well that might be worth a few Gs.
      solar lady
      • 4 Years Ago
      My 2006 Equanox Just locked me out. I had my keys, call phone, and purse on the seat. I loaded some stuff in the rear and walked around and heard a click, that locked me out. I was far from home and a 78 year old widow. I panicked and threw a big rock at the window and it just bounced back. I found help to call my grandson and he was able to get it open in 5 minutes with a wire. This has happened to my sister and others. Georgia Muller In Norwood, NC
      • 5 Years Ago
      ROFL at anyone who defends these IDIOTS who cant drive. And I might just piss my damn pants if I keep reading comments from people saying, "don't turn the engine off," or "you can't shift to neutral" etc. Just, please, shut the hell up. Granted our world has been on a steady decline of evolution for a long time, but that doesn't mean engineers are as stupid as to completely "bork" a car as to make it non drivable and illogically controllable.
      • 5 Years Ago
      There seems to be a problem with that gentlemans hat.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Nobody thought to turn the key to "off"?
        • 5 Years Ago
        @montrealmustang :

        wrong, wrong, wrong

        turn off the key and you turn off the fuel injectors and the spark plugs. no more acceleration.

        also, you will not lock the steering wheel unless you push in the key / put it in neutral while you turn it back. it will stop att accessory.
        • 5 Years Ago
        ive turned off my 97 cavalier on the freeway a couple of time (mainly to reset the abs light), When the transmission is in N or D you CANNOT REMOVE the keys NOR activate the lock function.to do that you have tu put it in Parking in order to remove the keys and lock the steering wheel.
        • 5 Years Ago
        The wheel doesn't lock only if you turn the key "slightly" off by one notch. Most people don't do that when they're cannonballing down the highway out of control.

        As for the electronics being shut off, the engine can keep itself going mechanically for a pretty long time without electronics. Maybe modern-modern-modern cars, like 2006's and up won't do that, but I guarantee that my 2002 Sunfire does it. I've jump started it many time, and that's the same principle as the one that'll keep a car running even when the ignition is turned off.
        • 5 Years Ago

        The engine won't stop AND you'll lock your steering wheel, meaning pretty much a certain crash. An engine can keep itself running through compression if the car is going fast enough. The wheels will turn the transmission, which turns the engine, which turns the pistons and crank, which turn the alternator, which powers all the electronics, which means that the engine will be getting everything it needs. It might run a little rough, but that won't much matter as your read end a tanker truck going 120 while frantically trying to force the steering wheel to turn.

        I'm not trashing you, but this is a very common and very deadly assumption from people. So if I sound harsh it's because I want people to remember what NOT to do.
        • 5 Years Ago
        And by the way, the key turns off the electronics in any modern car. What in the world are you driving?
        • 5 Years Ago
        First of all Montreal has no clue.

        Second, you don't want to turn your car off because you can lose power steering and such. You CAN turn it off but throw it into neutral before you do. But I recommend keeping it running. All cars these days have a rev limiter so you won't kill the engine if it revs freely.
      • 5 Years Ago
      yes... what is with technology when none of the things worked - when some of them surely would - until a police car pulls in front of you and slows down... at which point the technology all works again?

      Come on....

      When is the lawsuit to be filed?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Why didn't OnStar just kill the engine like they do when the car is stolen?
        • 5 Years Ago
        2009 and up select cars equipped with OnStar have that feature.

        And before people get up and arms about "big brother" you can request that feature be deactivated on your car if you choose to do so.
        • 5 Years Ago
        that was my first thought. On-Star says it can slow your car down if it has been car-jacked. why couldn't they have done that instead of the give her instructions.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Great question.

        Although, I wonder if all onstar vehicles are equipped with that ability.
        • 5 Years Ago
        OnStar won't kill an engine at that speed. It could cause a serious accident.
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