LOS ANGELES — Two lawsuits complaining of sudden, uncontrollable acceleration in Toyotas that resulted in deaths in Nebraska and Mississippi were filed against the automaker in Los Angeles federal court Friday.
Jacquelyn Donoghue of Holder, Neb., said in the lawsuit that her 2006 Toyota Prius suddenly sped up and went out of control in December, slamming into another vehicle, killing her husband John and seriously injuring her.
Her attorney, Robert Nelson, said Toyota vehicles weren’t equipped with a brake-to-idle safety feature, which allows drivers to override the electronic throttle and control the vehicle in case of a sudden unintended acceleration.
Other manufactures include this safety feature, and Toyota’s failure to include it on their models played a “direct role” in the death of John Donoghue, he said.
Jacquelyn Donoghue, a 67-year-old nurse, had to move out of her home after the accident so she could live closer to family members who could help take care of her.
Nelson is also representing Teresa and William Myers of Laurel, Miss., the parents of Steffan Myers, a 20-year-old who was killed in an accident on Jan. 10., just days before he started classes at the University of Mississippi college.
The Myers said in a lawsuit also filed Friday in federal court in Los Angeles that their son’s 2005 Toyota Camry suddenly accelerated and smashed into another car, killing both drivers.
Both suits seek general damages, medical expenses, lost earnings and punitive damages.
A message requesting comment from Toyota was not immediately returned. The case was filed in U.S. District Court because the automaker’s North American headquarters is located in Torrance, a suburb of Los Angeles.
Toyota has also been named in several proposed class action suits filed in Los Angeles federal court.
The world’s largest automaker has also been sued in Los Angeles County Superior Court on behalf of all affected owners of the 2010 Prius and the 2010 Lexus HS250h hybrid. Those models share the same braking system, which has been the object of consumer complaints.
BEFORE YOU GO…
… we’d like to ask for your support. More people are reading the Mississippi Business Journal than ever before, but advertising revenues for all conventional media are falling fast. Unlike many, we do not use a pay wall, because we want to continue providing Mississippi’s most comprehensive business news each and every day. But that takes time, money and hard work. We do it because it is important to us … and equally important to you, if you value the flow of trustworthy news and information which have always kept America strong and free for more than 200 years.
If those who read our content will help fund it, we can continue to bring you the very best in news and information. Please consider joining us as a valued member, or if you prefer, make a one-time contribution.Click for more info