By now, the tragic story of a Chula Vista family’s fatal runaway car accident, due to a stuck gas pedal, is very familiar for everyone in Southern California, if not the country. It is a rare case that no one should never have to go through and few people ever do. However, accidents do happen and you should be prepared for them when they do.
Toyota has finally recalled all of its vehicles that are known to have malfunctioning gas pedals in an effort to dodge product liability lawsuits, but that does not mean that it can’t happen in other makes and models of car. Imagine the pain and suffering that could come to you and your family if you are caught in a situation similar to this one.
For our auto accident attorneys who work at our firm, their stance is that they’d rather see you happy and healthy rather than caught in a traffic accident. That’s why it never hurts to have knowledge on your side, so, if you find yourself in a runaway vehicle, here are three tips for what you can do to avoid a car accident when you are in a runaway vehicle:
1. Do Not Pump Your Brakes
Pumping your brakes creates a pattern of pressure applied and then taken away. Each time that you foot comes off the brakes, pressure is lost, thus making it harder to stop your vehicle from speeding out of control. Now, that’s not to say do not brake at all, just do not pump your brakes. Keep your foot on the pedal and don’t move it.
2. Shift Into Neutral
Once you have shifted into neutral and have your foot on the brake, the car should come to a complete stop. Wait until you are not moving at all any more before turning the engine off. If you do not wait for your car to come to a full halt while in neutral there is the possibility that power will be lost to the power steering. If that happens, you will find it harder to turn and maneuver the steering wheel.
3. Emergency Brakes Can Be Misleading
While they have the word “emergency” in their name, using the emergency brake when you are in a runaway vehicle might cause more problems than it will solve. If you use the emergency brakes, your car could flip over, causing a rollover car accident and put passengers inside the vehicle at great risk of wrongful death happening.
Our firm’s auto accident attorneys believe that knowledge and preparation are the best car insurance policy that you can have out on the road. When you are ready for an accident to happen, you are ready to save lives.
What do you think about these tips? Do you have any other ones you’d like to share? What can you do if you are on the road and see a runaway vehicle?
If you or a loved one have been injured because of someone else’s negligence, then we urge you to contact our bilingual offices as soon as possible at 1-858-551-2090 or please click here for a free consultation with an experienced auto accident attorney. We handle all cases on a contingency fee basis, which means that you owe us nothing until we recover money on your behalf.
SENIOR PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY & FIRM FOUNDER
Michael Pines is a former insurance company attorney who graduated from the University of California Hastings College of the Law in 1987. While he was an insurance attorney, he learned from behind the scenes how insurance companies work and how they decide how much to pay injured people. Now that he works against insurance companies, Michael’s inside knowledge has resulted in significant benefits to his clients injured in car accidents. Learn more about Michael Pines