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0: Cruise Control Home
2:What is Cruise Control?
3: Principles
4: Functional aspects
5: What is Sudden Acceleration?
6: Incidence & Examples
7: Internal 
failure mechanisms
8: Discussion
of  Failure Mechanisms
9: Links & References
9.5: SAI
by manufacturer

Dr Antony Anderson 
Back to 9 - Sudden Acceleration Links and References


9.1. How a cruise control system works
9.2. General background
(Incl papers and patents)
9.3. Miscellaneous material on sudden acceleration
9.3.4 CANADA
9.3.5 JAPAN
9.3.6 KOREA
9.3.7 EUROPE
9.4. NHTSA
(Complaints Database, Reports, Recalls)
9.5. References to particular manufacturers: 
Audi - BMW - Buick - Chrysler - Daewoo -  Ford - General Motors - Honda - Jaguar - Land Rover - Mercedes - Mitsubishi - Nissan - Renault -  Toyota - Toyota/Lexus -  Volvo

9.6. Alternatives to cruise control
(Speed Sensitive Accelerator)
  • Abrams, Douglas B. :  Cruise Controls, Computers and Electromagnetic Interference  An interesting short paper reviewing potential mechanisms of cruise control malfunction. Discussion mainly relates to information discovered  in cases Stuart v. General Motors, Sellers v. Chrysler, Collona v. Chrysler. It appears that General Motors itself recognised that radiated electromagnetic interference had the potential for causing intereference with various electric systems and that conducted or radiated electromagnetic interference could disrupt the proper functioning of the cruise control module. On May 13th 1987, it would appear that General Motors induced a wide open throttle condition by injecting bulk current at between 1.9 and 8.5 MHZ. The event was repeatable. The internal tachometer was found to be RF susceptible. The paper claims that General Motors also investigated the effect of vehicle vibration on cruise control operation and that the vacuum valve could be opened by vehicle vibrations under fast idle conditions. Cruise control servo vibration was amplified by resonances of its mounting bracket at 28 to 56 MHZ.  The author Douglas B. Abrams offers to make copies of various documents referenced in the paper available via his office. [ http://www.abramslawfirm.com]

  • Neil Mizen, a professional mechanical engineer registered in New York and Illinois works an expert witness in product liability lawsuits claims to have analyzed cruise control systems relative to their potential to cause cars to accelerate out of the driver's control and to have shown that Electromagnetic Interference could cause cruise control systems to accelerate a car beyond the driver's ability to control the vehicle. http://www.mizenengineering.com/hyper[1].htm#4 
  • November 21 2000 Sudden Accelerations and stuck throttles Wade Bartlett Mechanical Forensics Engineering Services, LLC (Reproduced in the November 21, 2000 issue of the e-zine Autospeed , Issue 107) Wade Bartlett. 'It is not uncommon for someone to claim that their vehicle experienced an "unanticipated acceleration" or "sudden  acceleration" (S/A). Despite having looked at many cars thusly accused, I have yet to personally find support for such claims'.http://www.mfes.com/suddenaccel.html



  • April 19, 2004 Sudden acceleration: litigation springs eternal  Fifteen years after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration concluded that the explanation for supposed "sudden acceleration" in cars was that the drivers were mistakenly pressing the accelerator rather than the brake, trial lawyers continue to sue automakers, and now NHTSA has agreed to open an investigation into claims of unintended acceleration in Toyota and Lexus models. http://overlawyered.com/archives/001019.html
  • June 2000 -- Sudden Deceleration.  Score another sharp setback for the notion, still dear to some trial lawyers and TV newsmagazines, that cars experience "sudden acceleration", taking off on their own though their owners are pressing hard on the brakes. http://overlawyered.com/archives/00june1.html#000606a
  • 1994 Reinhart, W. The effect of countermeasures to reduce the incidence of unintended acceleration incidents National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration United States Paper No 94 S5 0 07 Fourteenth International Technical Conference on Enhanced Safety in Vehicles Munich Germany May 23-26 1994Abstract: This paper provides a description of "Unintended Acceleration" UA in passenger cars, provides dtat pertaining to the scope of the problem (number of accidents and injuries reported annually to NHTSA), Identifies the known causes of UA, discusses countermeasures to reduce the incidence of US,and provides analysis to assess the reducitons in the UA incident rates which have resulted from the use of automatic shift locks. UA Reports are defined as incidents of high powered unwanted vehicle acceleration from a stationary position or very slow speed, accompanied by reportedly ineffective brakes. Previous studies and investigations performed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and by Canadian and Japanese Governement agencies have concluded that the major causes of such incidents has been drivers unknowingly depressing the accelerator instead of the brake pedal on automatic transmission equipped cars. BBased on Data from NHTSA's computerized consumer complaints file system, and information obtained in the course of agency defect investigations, the paper concludes that the best  known countermeasure to US has been factory installation of automatic shift lock systems which prevent the driver from shifting the transmission ot of Park unless the brake pedal is being applied simultaneously. A comparison of reported UA accident rates (accidents per vehicle produced) for automatic transmission equipped cars indicates that the cars equipped with shift locks have experienced UA accidents at approximately 1/2 to 1/4 the rate of comparable cars without shiftlocks. Also the effect on UA of retrofitting shift locks on one particular make/model is assessed.
  • June 21, 1993 : It Didn't Start With Dateline NBC By Walter Olson National Review,  An investigation of past network auto-safety coverage reveals that both CBS and ABC have run the same sorts of grossly misleading crash videos and simulations, withheld the same  sorts of material facts about the tests, and relied on the same dubious experts with the same ties to the plaintiffs bar. http://walterolson.com/articles/crashtests.html
  • July 8 1991 Forbes Magazine p 68 JUNK SCIENCE IN THE COURTROOM by Peter Huber  : "The mass media can often play a critical role in the early stages of a junk science epidemic. In 1986, for example, assisted by an inflammatory segment on CBS' 60 Minutes, plaintiff lawyers filed hundreds of claims blaming bizarre car accidents on an unidentified design defect in the Audi 5000....http://overlawyered.com/articles/huber/junksci.htm
  • September 1989 Brackett, R.Q., Pezoldt, V.J., Sherrod, M.G. Human Factors Analysis of Automotive Foot Pedals  DOT  HS 807512 US Depertment of Transportation National Highway Traffic Safety Administration "The results of a literature review, field measurements and experimental studies led to the development of a set of recommendations for the design and layout of foot pedals which conform to the expectancies and preferences of a large portion of the driving population. Recommendations are provided for automobiles equipped with automatic transmissions."

  • December1988: Marrinder, P., Granery, J.: Investigation of Sudden Acceleration Incidents. Transport of Canada File ASF3282-8-18. Defect Investigation Division, Road Safety and Motor Vehicle Regulation Directorate, Transport Canada, Ottawas, Ontario - KLA 0N5 Abstract: "Sudden Acceleration" is a phenomenon which has received considerable attention during the past several years. For the purposes of this report "Sudden Acceleration" (S.A.) is defined as an incident conforming to the following pattern: 1) vehicle's automatic transmission is in the "park" or neutral position; 2) vehicle is started by the driver or is at idle; 3) driver shifts from "park" or "neutral" to "reverse" or "drive"; 4) vehicle accelerates rapidly, apparently without driver input; and 5) brakes are reported to be ineffective. The report discusses the history of various government bodies' involvement in the investigation of such incidents, the results of studies and investigations, and the present position of governments and manufacturers concerning these incidents.

  • April 1989 : Sudden Starting and Acceleration in Automatic Vehicles Traffic Safety and Nuisance Research Institute, Japanese Ministry of Transport.. A report prepared to disseminate the results of the "Investigation into vehicle configuration and equipment to determine the cause of sudden starting and acceleration in automatic transmission equipped vehicles, an investigation performed in 1987 and 1988 at the request of the Director-General of the Regional Transport Bureau, Ministry of Transport.

  • March 1988 : Sudden Starting and Acceleration in Automatic Transmission Vehicles. Traffic Safety and Nuisance Research Institute, Japanese Ministry of Transport. An interim report to disseminate the results of the 1987 continuation of the "Investigation into vehicle configuration and equipment to determine the cause of sudden starting and acceleration in automatic transmission equipped vehicles," an investigation performed at the request of the Director-General of the Regional Transport Bureau, Ministry of Transport.
  • March 28 2004: Sudden Acceleration' Claim Dismissed [GM Daewoo] By Byun Duk-kunStaff Reporter  The Supreme Court of Korea, the nation’s highest court, on Sunday dismissed a claim leveled by a parking facility employee that a mechanical failure in a vehicle produced by a local carmaker led to a sudden acceleration and then to an accident.The ruling was the first of its kind by the Supreme Court on claims regarding rapid acceleration of vehicles. It is expected to have an enormous impact on a number of similar suits at lower courts.  http://times.hankooki.com/lpage/nation/200403/kt2004032817442011980.htm
  • Oct 9 1999 : Sudden Acceleration Accident - Some Theory from Korea. Yu-Sung Chang (changyu@CIMS.NYU.EDU) Sat, 9 Oct 1999 07:13:32 -0400 (EDT). Recently, there've been a lot of Sudden Acceleration accident in Korea. A TV station (SBS, Seoul Broadcasting System) got a clue of these accidents, and they broadcasted it nationwidely. http://www.tarorigin.com/ARnews/ARnews6-99/0191.html   [There are further postings on this thread]
  •  June 1, 1999 Essay   No. :  99-20  Car Acceleration Accidents and Product Liability .   O-Seong Kweon Director of Public Policy Div. at CFE   Used to be available at http://www.cfe.org/english/major/essay_9920.htm

May 1st 2004
Restrictions on use of
cruise control  is introduced
on sections of some Belgian
motorways to reduce  accidents.

Cruise control warning belgium
The use of cruise control  is forbidden
 from this route sign onwards
until the next junction.

Cruise restriction ends

End of Cruise Control restriction. ACCELERATION IN FRANCE 
Oct 3 2004: The "Vel Satis folle" incident.  On the night of Sunday Oct 3rd 2004, Hicham Draa was driving  home on autoroute A74 in his Renault Vel Satis automatic, fitted with an electronic throttle and speed control. According to press reports, he had set his speed control at 130 km/hr and had covered a distance of about 30 km and was near Vierzon when he accelerated to overtake a lorry. The vehicle continued to accelerate to about 190 km/hr. He found himself unable to brake or cut off the engine. He alerted the police at Vierzon by mobile telephone who in turn warned their colleagues at Allier. After covering 150 km, Draa  finally managed to remove the smart card (used instead of a key) from the dashboard and switch off the engine: bringing the vehicle to a halt about 20 km from the toll barrier at Combronde. The police, fearing that he would be unable to stop at the toll barrier, took precautions: they  evacuated  toll cabins personnel, raised the toll barriers, illuminated the arrows used to direct exceptional convoys so that  other drivers remained stopped in the  emergency stopping lane  and  firemen and  paramedics were put on standby at the toll barrier. Since then, there have been many other incidents of blocked speed regulators in france see TF1.fr dossier on speed regulators        Also:     Video Clips  'Regulateur de vitesse: France 2
      • l’objet statutaire:"de défendre les droits ainsi que les intérêts matériels et moraux, tant collectifs qu’individuels, des conducteurs et passagers des véhicules automobiles ayant été l’objet de pannes de l’un quelconque de leurs systèmes électroniques installés à bord (air-bag, régulateur ou limiteur de vitesse etc....), que lesdites pannes aient ou non engendré, directement ou indirectement, un accident de la circulation."
      • Statutory object: "to defend the rights and equally the material and moral interests, whether collective or individual, of drivers and passengers of automobile vehicles that have been the object of  breakdowns of any one of their electronic systems installed on board (air-bag, speed regulator or speed limiter etc), whether  the aforementioned breakdowns have or have not generated, directly or indirectly, a traffic accident."



0: Cruise Control Home
2:What is Cruise Control?
3: Principles
4: Functional aspects
5: What is Sudden Acceleration?
6: Incidence & Examples
7: Internal 
failure mechanisms
8: Discussion
of  Failure Mechanisms
9: Links & References

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Section 9 : Version 1.1 Updated February 21st 2002 and May 8th 2002, May 16th 2002, September 13th 2002, 
January 31st 2003, February 10th 2003, February 13th 2003, February 14th 2003, February 26th 2003, March 2nd 2003 March 10th 2003, May 2nd 2003, May 8th 2003, June 17th 2003, July 2nd 2003, September 3rd 2003, November 16th 2003, December 31st 2003, January 4th 2004, January 6th 2004, January 10th 2004, Feb 11th 2004, March 21st 2004, March 28th 2004, April 1st 2004, April 14th 2004
.Version 1.2:
May 7th 2004, May 29th 2004, Aug 8th 2004, October 7th 2004, October 11th 2004, December 4th  2004, January 31st 2005, March 9th 2005, March 23rd 2005, March 25 2005, April 17th 2005. April 20th 2005, May 19th 2005, Split into separate sub-pages August 9th 2005, Nov 25th 2005
©Antony Anderson Version 1.0 February 2001 and Version 1.1 July 2001 and version 1.2 May 7th 2004