Toyota Motor Corp. lost a court case in a Oklahoma courtroom last week connected to a sudden acceleration defect. The defeat could be the first of many, reports the Los Angeles Times.
According to reports, the verdict revolved around Toyota’s electronic components, an area that has received significant attention from plaintiff’s looking to prove that their Toyota vehicle had a safety defect.
On Friday, Toyota verified that it had reached a confidential settlement just hours after a jury gave the plaintiff $3 million in compensatory damages, but had not yet levied a punitive award. The lawsuit stemmed from a fatal crash involving a Toyota Camry in 2007.
The Camry, a 2005 model, collided with an embankment and seriously injured the driver, Jean Bookout, 76, and killed the vehicle’s passenger, Barbara Schwarz.
The verdict could serve as a guide for lawyers looking to find automakers liable for deaths and injuries in car accidents.
Toyota has vehemently denied the existence of safety defects in their vehicles, and has said that the majority of unintended acceleration accidents are caused by drivers hitting the gas instead of the brake. However, lawyers in this case were able to prove that Toyota’s electronic throttle system was defective, and led to the car’s acceleration.
In settling quickly and quietly, Toyota looks to avoid bad publicity and damage to its reputation. We will keep you updated on the consequences of this verdict.
The Parrish Law Firm defective vehicle attorney works with northern Virginia residents who have suffered injuries because of safety defects in their vehicles. Contact us today for a free case consultation, or call us at 703-906-4229.
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