The EE Times Community Deliberates Toyota's Acceleration Case as Jury Finds Automaker Guilty

Conversations That Matter on EE Times

Oct 31, 2013, 12:00 ET from EE Times

SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 31, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- In a verdict delivered on October 24, 2013, an Oklahoma County jury found Toyota's in-car technology liable for a 2007 crash, according to the EE Times article "Acceleration Case: Jury Finds Toyota Liable." This case is the first in which the plaintiff has laid the blame squarely on the electronic throttle system with the focus on software and electronics used in the electronic throttle control, rather than the entanglement of the accelerator pedal with a floor mat -- something Toyota previously cited as a cause of accidents. EE Times' Junko Yoshida, author of the article, carried the discussion online, discussing not just how software bugs can kill, but who is capable of exonerating an automaker once the finger is pointed, or even if it should be exonerated.

Re: More to come
junko.yoshida   10/24/2013 9:39:00 PM
"When sw malfunctions on our iphone, it's inconvenience. But when sw kills a person? That's a big deal."

Toyota acceleration
Joe999   10/26/2013 10:06:13 AM
"Let's see what Toyota really knows. Do a comparison of the code used in the cars that experienced the unintended acceleration and the code they are now using."

The Deep Pocket doctrine
DMcCunney   10/25/2013 7:52:05 PM
" I suspect Toyota was cursing a corporate blue streak when this came before a jury. An old lawyer friend once expounded on the "Deep Pocket Doctrine of Jury Trials", which reduces to 'The side perceived as having the money will pay, regardless of the facts of the case.'… The jury is likely not competent to evaluate the facts anyway.  There are unlikely to be engineers on the jury, and the jury will listen to prosecution and defense witnesses, then vote with their gut…There is more to come, and I'll be curious to see follow up reports, but I don't expect jury trials to answer the question of whether Toyota's electronic controller was the problem."

To read the complete story or to join in the conversation on, see: "Acceleration Case: Jury Finds Toyota Liable" or go deeper on EDN and see: "Toyota's Killer Firmware: Bad Design and its Consequences".

If you want to contribute to the community conversation on EE Times as a blogger contact Karen Field at or Susan Rambo at

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