The recent recall of millions of Toyotas due to their floor mats’ unfortunate tendency to trap the cars’ accelerators, a flaw which has caused at least one confirmed horrific fatal accident, has caused people to wonder: if this happened to me, what would I do? Equipped with several different makes of cars and a test track, our colleagues at Consumer Reports Cars decided to play Mythbusters and put different stuck-accelerator survival strategies to the test.

What should you do if you are put in such a situation? The answer is simple: Put the car in neutral. In each one of the cars we tested, we were able to easily nudge the gear lever into neutral and stop the car quickly. All modern engines have rev limiters that prevent the engine from over revving and damaging the engine. You can safely shut off the engine after you come to a stop. However, we do not advise shutting off the engine while still driving. We tried this with our Toyota Venza—as Toyota suggests—by holding down the start/stop button for three seconds. While this also allowed us to stop, we lost power steering and had trouble maneuvering the vehicle due to the extremely heavy steering.

Source: Consumer

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