The new "Unintended Acceleration"....?
brett at cloud9.net
Mon Sep 20 20:38:16 EDT 2004
At 3:21 PM -0700 9/20/04, Dan DiBiase wrote:
>While certainly sorry to hear about this gentleman's accident, I
>wonder if any 5000 owners can comment on the likelihoood of this
>happening or what might have caused it....?
Unbelievable bullshit. Dangerous and defective car?
"There's absolutely no warnings in the car or in the owner's manual
that if you don't follow various precautions that this could happen.""
The manual most certainly does- both the owner's manual and the
factory repair manual, I believe- though I don't have a 5000 manual
handy to check. Further, the cover on the factory battery is bright
orange and warns the cover MUST be in place or the seat will contact
the battery terminal. Even though I didn't have the factory battery
in mine- the factory cover was right there, snapped over the "+"
terminal, with a VAG part number on it and the warning molded into
The design isn't just in every 5000- count all the C4-body cars (at
least the s-cars) and all the V8's. The number isn't "thousands" of
cars, it's a few hundred thousand cars. VERY few cars have had this
problem, and in all cases, it's been improper installation.
Further- the design is inherently safer. Why? The battery enjoys
the full protection of the passenger area in the event of a crash.
Helps a little with weight distribution, and mounted very low. It's
also a better design for other reasons - the battery is protected
from temperature extremes.
In Jarvis' case it is believed that the fire started in part because
the person who sold Jarvis the car had improperly reinstalled the
"But it's our contention that is somewhat inherent in the way it's
designed," Baruh said.
FACT: it is IMPOSSIBLE to secure the two screws that hold the seat
front down if the seat has not been properly installed. They just
won't line up or even reach. It's actually VERY inherent that it
can't be fully assembled "the wrong way". Furthermore, it's not
obvious looking at the seat that if you don't put in properly, the
metal might contact the + terminal? What's next, warning symbols on
electric sockets warning you not to stick a fork in it? It's
inherent in the way it's designed that certain forks will fit!
Why didn't he pull up on the door lock? The pump getting burned up
has nothing to do with being able to unlock the doors. In fact, if
the pump was burned up quickly, that would actually make it
impossible for the pump to fight you(and with the pump going, yes,
it's pretty difficult to get the door unlocked).
Why didn't the fire department smash the window, cut the belt, and
pull him out?
-Didn't notice"? The fumes and smoke should have been a clue.
AoA will probably claim they're not responsible for:
-prior owner's actions, maintenance, and repair on a TWENTY YEAR OLD
car...as well as lack of due diligence on the part of the buyer to
have it inspected by a mechanic- who no doubt would have noticed the
seat not properly installed
-ineptitude of bystanders and rescue personnel. They were able to
put out the flames- which means at least one of the windows were open
or were smashed- but they couldn't smash the window with the fire
extinguisher(or a rock) , cut the belt, and haul him out? Smashing
the window also would have given access to the door lock. Smashing
the windows also would have vented all the fumes.
It is possible to jam the door lock mechanism while it's being
unlocked- I've had impatient friends who, when I had my 5000, would
try to open the door while the system unlocked. The mechanism jams
sometimes- requiring you to push the lock button down (PING! is
heard) and then pull up again.
Honestly, the family should be suing the previous owner and FD - but
I bet they found the PO has no assets, and suing fire departments is
rather unpopular, not to mention somewhat protected(as are, in some
states, "good samaritans".
Sorry folks- Audis' completely not responsible here, and this seems
like an extremely easy defense on their part. The sad part is that
the jury will probably end up giving them the money simply because
they feel sorry for the family- which is no basis for deciding such
as case. Thankfully the judge can usually override them...
"They that give up essential liberty to obtain temporary
safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." - Ben Franklin
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