As Toyota recalls millions of its cars due to accelerator problems, the UK’s Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) today offers advice to drivers on what to do in event of such an engineering malfunction.
Although it may seem common sense to most people, those with a low panic threshold are urged to keep the following in the back of their mind should such an incident occur.
“Keep calm – surprisingly the perception of the average driver with a stuck accelerator is that they can’t brake either, but this is a misconception brought on by panic,” says Mr Stephen Mead, IAM Assistant Chief Examiner.
“Press the brake firmly, then the clutch, disengaging the power. In an automatic, drivers should brake, wait for a reaction from the vehicle and then put the car into neutral. You can still steer, too, so a stuck accelerator isn’t actually the disaster it sounds.
“Look for somewhere to stop safely, indicate and make the manoeuvre as you would under normal circumstances. There will be loud revving in the background and you will probably be in a state of shock, but if you remain calm you can avoid serious danger.”
The IAM also urged owners of vehicles affected by recalls to arrange for the vehicle to be seen by the manufacturer as soon as possible to avoid on going problems.
“Do look into getting a recall as soon as possible. Surprisingly few people actually approach manufacturers for recalls, which means the vehicles get sold on with the fault going unknown.”