Class action against Toyota points blame at lack of brake override system

Michelle Massey, East Texas Bureau Mar. 15, 2010, 8:00am

TEXARKANA, Texas -- Toyota's vehicles are unsafe because they lack a brake override system, a proposed class action states.

On behalf of herself and all others similarly situated, Jasbir Grewal filed suit against Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc., Toyota Motor Corp. and Does 1 through 10 on March 4 in the Texarkana Division of the Eastern District of Texas.

The plaintiff owns a 2009 Toyota Camry, which she purchased from Houston.

The court documents state that with the lack of a brake override system, the faulty electronic throttle control system with intelligence is creating a "serious and life-threatening safety condition for drivers of and passengers in Defendants' vehicles, as well as other motorists, pedestrians, and bystanders."

The drive pedal sensor on the accelerator is electronically controlled and does not have a direct connection to the engine. Other manufacturers install a brake override system that includes a "drive-by-wire" technology. This allows vehicle brakes to override the accelerator, in case of a conflict.

The proposed class will include any Texan who has purchased or leased a vehicle manufactured or warranted by Toyota that is subject to uncontrolled or unintended sudden acceleration.

Grewal argues that the defendant failed to disclose how their vehicles are unsafe and defective.

Causes of action filed against Toyota include breach of express and implied warranties of merchantability, violation of the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, and violations of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practice Act-Consumer Protection Act.

Houston attorneys Fletcher V. Trammell and Robert W. Cowan of the law firm Bailey, Perrin, Bailey are representing the plaintiff.

U.S. District Judge David Folsom is assigned to the litigation.

Case No 5:10cv00042

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