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GasBuddy News Article

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If gas pedal gets stuck, put it in neutral — and get off the road

The Sunion --
Q: I read the story about LuAnn Burgess, the woman charged with striking and killing three women who said her flip flop fell off and caused her accelerator to get stuck.

Something similar happened to me last summer, and I believe some advice on how to handle the situation might save a life someday.

As I was driving on the Thruway between exits 24 and 25 heading west, I noticed my automobile was gradually increasing in speed and I could also sense the accelerator pedal was moving away from my foot. Soon I was traveling 65, then 70-plus mph.

Instead of panicking, I simply threw the gearshift lever in neutral and pulled over onto the shoulder and shut off the engine. I then proceeded another half-mile and did the same thing again.

Every half-mile or so I would repeat this proce


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Submitted Aug 13, 2012 By: aservant
Category: Daily News Article Discussions > Topics Add to favorite topics  
Author Topic: If gas pedal gets stuck, put it in neutral — and get off the road Back to Topics
REPLIES (newest first) Post a Reply
honda0105
Champion Author Tallahassee

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Message Posted: Aug 15, 2012 5:29:02 AM

that's why you don't drive w/ flip-flops on in the first place.

And the rest of the stuff, it's common sense. Oh, wait, that's been lost long ago...
hank1326
Champion Author Los Angeles

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Message Posted: Aug 14, 2012 10:00:42 PM

Common sense.
LetemEatCake
Champion Author Oklahoma City

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Message Posted: Aug 14, 2012 9:45:43 PM


Thanks for posting Aservant.....good article!
melvindale
Champion Author Michigan

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Message Posted: Aug 14, 2012 3:11:40 PM

I always thought putting it in neutral was common sense, but obviously not.

The cop pointing out what is written in driving manuals is interesting. Does he not know that nobody reads anything anymore?

I've always felt that there should be better training for drivers. Hands-on how to avoid an accident training should be drilled into everybody.

Why is it that only a minority of people care about anything anymore? The majority just can't be bothered.

When you consider how hard it was to drive cars from 75 or 100 years ago, and how narrow the roads were, how little safety equipment there was. Clearly people cared more then or there would have been many more fatalities than there were.
gazguzzler11
Champion Author Ontario

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Message Posted: Aug 14, 2012 1:06:08 PM

I have a few problems with what is reported in this story + what people are posting:
1) I need somebody to explain to me how something UNDER the gas pedal makes the car accelerate.
2) Shutting off the ignition WILL NOT lock the steering column unless the car is in PARK.
3) One of the many computer modules in the car has a chip that limits the revs so all this talk about blowing the engine is unfounded.
sparky808
Champion Author Honolulu

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Message Posted: Aug 14, 2012 12:24:56 PM

Thank you for posting.
DesertRat2011
Champion Author Riverside

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Message Posted: Aug 14, 2012 9:10:14 AM

Lets see in 50 + years of driving it has happened to me ZERO time !!
tomok
Champion Author Portland

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Message Posted: Aug 14, 2012 4:26:26 AM

If the vehicle is going faster and faster for No reason and there is No control, turn the key off (don't over rev the engine) and steer to the side of the road. The power steering will not work, so the steering wheel may be hard to turn. Stop, don't move and get help!
Whatever the size or shape of the vehicle, Produce and ‘Drive’ vehicles with high MPG, are very safe, reliable, have a ‘reasonable’ cost and a good ‘value’ for the money. Consider using other forms of less expensive transportation to lower your cost.
The price of fuel at the pump is too high!
12/22/2012
TIGERPAW46
Champion Author Florida

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 11:33:03 PM

Depending on the position of your engine, such as a side mounted front wheel drive vehicle, if you sling a rod through the side of the engine it could fire into the passenger area of the vehicle like a missle. Race cars usually have a steel plate in the fire wall to prevent this if the engine turns too many rpms. But in passenger cars the firewall usually isn't thick enough to stop a rod slung at 9,000 rpm or more, even after going through the engine block side wall. If it only comes loose at the wrist pin the crank shaft will still hold usually but if both connections let go it will be a large metal missle

[Edited by: TIGERPAW46 at 8/14/2012 12:34:00 AM EST]
gem1224
Champion Author Tulsa

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 11:19:56 PM

LOL Really????
TIGERPAW46
Champion Author Florida

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 11:12:09 PM

This sometimes happens if the throttle gets stuck due to poor maintenance (not lubricating the throttle linkage or cables) or objects like shoes etc. wedge under the gas pedal. So it doesn't only happen in Toyotas. If your steering locks when you turn off your ignition, you can turn off the ignition allowing the engine to quit; then you can turn the ignition back on (don't turn all the way to re-crank), that will still allow you to steer. Steering & braking will require more effort without the power assist if your vehicle has that function.

[Edited by: TIGERPAW46 at 8/14/2012 12:15:38 AM EST]
us4usa
Champion Author Missouri

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 11:09:12 PM

Common sense, trade in your Toyota and get a Ford...
Jarol
Champion Author Iowa

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 11:08:02 PM

Good tip.
rahcat
Champion Author Grand Rapids

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 11:08:01 PM

If all fails, use the ejecton seat.
judgemobile
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 11:06:48 PM

DO NOT shut offf engine or you will immediately lose power assisted braking.
Bud122CA
Champion Author California

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 11:03:16 PM

common sence and experience goes a long way. Some people don't have it.
Vette1967
Champion Author Albany

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 11:01:59 PM

Wow...all this happened near me. She is lucky nobody got hurt. It is a very busy highway with toll booths and backed up traffic.
Cashless
Champion Author Akron

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 11:01:39 PM

Good to know.
TIGERPAW46
Champion Author Florida

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 11:00:14 PM

No don't put it into neutral, just turn off the ignition. Don't blow up the engine. Putting in neutral will allow the engine to turn too many RPM & BLOW THE ENGINE. If you just turn off the Ignition it will stop the engine. You will loose power assisted brakes & steering but you can still control the car. The steering & braking will just take more effort.

[Edited by: TIGERPAW46 at 8/14/2012 12:05:19 AM EST]
bonzoonfmb
Champion Author Florida

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:57:57 PM

Except for Toyotas, what is the probability that this will happen?
miser709
Champion Author Grand Rapids

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:56:32 PM

Ok, fine.
Alaydown
Champion Author Los Angeles

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:53:36 PM

This is common sense.
jerej829
Champion Author Memphis

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:51:33 PM

ok
jrsva
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:49:58 PM

“SUV's like the one that speed'ed up and crashed . . .”
“common sense go's a long way.”

Don’t you just love those misplaced apostrophes??!!
dchiou
Champion Author San Jose

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:47:46 PM

cool
jrsva
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:45:09 PM

Mdski, “No, just simply reach over and turn the ignition key to OFF.”

That works fine on older (simpler) cars but not so much with current vehicles. If you turn off the ignition in a vehicle with power steering it will suddenly become very hard to steer. If it has an interlock on the steering column the wheel will lock and you cannot steer at all. Get it into neutral, get the speed under control, then shut off the ignition. Better to over-rev the engine than to crash.

mstearno
Champion Author Dayton

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:42:01 PM

gas prices or logic class?
gd83goldwinger
Champion Author South Bend

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:40:17 PM

common sense go's a long way.
jrsva
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:37:33 PM


“LuAnn Burgess . . . said her flip flop fell off and caused her accelerator to get stuck.”

Driving with flip-flops is really stupid. Either go barefoot or wear shoes that will stay in place.
Blue48
Champion Author Illinois

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:36:50 PM

GOOD INFO!
mdskier
Champion Author Sacramento

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:36:32 PM

No, just simply reach over and turn the ignition key to OFF.
(I've done this a few times) then quickly put the car in neutral,
else you overrev the engine.

This, of course, does not work on keyless ignition cars
like my Toyota Prius and some Acura SUV's like the one that
speed'ed up and crashed in San Diego. You press AND HOLD the
"Start" button in for 5 seconds to stop these.
petrpuck
All-Star Author Hamilton

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:34:52 PM

really !!
PoohMcGoo
Champion Author Alabama

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:32:25 PM

Duhh
dirt girl
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:31:57 PM

Not to bright restarting the car and driving when there was something obviously wrong. Would think that would be hard on the transmission too.
FlyNFool
Champion Author South Carolina

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:29:45 PM

Pop the thrust reversers!
bojiway1
Champion Author Minnesota

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:29:25 PM

keeping control and thinking things though, way to go
Mustache_33
All-Star Author Toronto

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:29:16 PM

Yes. Also note: Do not wear dumbass footwear like flip-flops and stilettos when driving. An ounce of less self-idiocy ... can save someone else's life.
wayoung56
Champion Author Alabama

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:28:05 PM

Interesting article...
KY_Homeboy
All-Star Author Kentucky

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:26:57 PM

Great clear-headed thinking!
Bruno44
Champion Author Texas

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:26:53 PM

monarch57, I did the same thing.
rjoeh
Champion Author Michigan

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:24:55 PM

Congratulations for using your mind and solving a problem not of your making. If more people would use their minds instead of jumping to conclusions and complaining... a lot of things might work out better.
blazerbob91
Champion Author Milwaukee

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:22:22 PM

Common sense
30mpg80
Champion Author Lexington

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:21:39 PM

Why risk lives to do it over again and again? Death wish?
monarch57
Champion Author British Columbia

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:20:11 PM

had that happen to me when I was in high school the gas pedal stuck on my dads 64 Mercury and I just shut off the key and the gas pedal freed itself. It turn out to be two broken motor mounts that caused it to jam.
mcmonsta
Champion Author Honolulu

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:18:54 PM

some people are able to think and do...and some cannot react in a common sense matter. common sense is harder to find at any age
DriverofRed
Champion Author Calgary

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:18:01 PM

ok
drobbbb
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:16:18 PM

ok
camel1
Champion Author Minnesota

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:15:57 PM

some one can still think, how tremendously great that is to hear
saleboss
Champion Author Phoenix

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:13:31 PM

Was this one of the Toyota recall items?
Jeeputtputt
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:12:37 PM

isn't that how all cars run? mine does...
OOXXFF
Champion Author Greensboro

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2012 10:12:12 PM

Good advice.
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