In the latest blow to mainstream media hype, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has failed to find any evidence electronic failures led to cases of unintended acceleration in Toyota vehicles.
According to the Detroit News, NHTSA officials told Congress human error was to blame in 35 of the 58 cases under review. The rest of the incidents were attributed to sticky / trapped accelerator pedals.
According to NHTSA spokeswoman Olivia Alair, "Reviewing event data recorders is one small part of (the NHTSA's) effort to get to the bottom of unintended acceleration in Toyota vehicles. At this early period in the investigation, engineers have not identified any new safety defects in Toyotas other than sticking gas pedals or pedal entrapment."
Despite this, the NHTSA is continuing their investigation. The government entity is teaming up with NASA to determine if electromagnetic interference (aka cosmic rays) could cause unintended acceleration.
As we have previously reported, Toyota recalled approximately 4.2 million vehicles (worldwide) to install a steel reinforcement bar in accelerator mechanisms used in the RAV4, Corolla, Avalon, Camry, Tundra, and Sequoia. The company was eventually fined $16.4 million dollars for not disclosing their knowledge of the defect.