Posted at 7:32 a.m., Wednesday, September 26, 2007
Toyota issues recall over Lexus, Camry floor mats
By KEN THOMAS
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration issued a consumer advisory about the heavy-duty rubber floor mats, noting that if unsecured, the map could move forward and trap the gas pedal, causing the vehicle to accelerate uncontrollably.
NHTSA urged drivers of other vehicles, including the Avalon and Prius, to check the driver-side floor mats to ensure they were properly installed. NHTSA spokesman Rae Tyson said it was taking the step "because we believe potentially it is a very serious safety issue."
Toyota spokesman Bill Kwong said the automaker had not received any complaints about the Avalon and Prius. In some cases, he said the floor mats used to collect rain water, mud and snow were stacked on top of the original carpet mats and wedged up against the accelerator.
The vehicle has hooks on the floor that can only secure one mat at a time.
Toyota has received 22 complaints and learned of six accidents allegedly connected to the issue. Kwong said they did not know of any injuries linked to the mats.
The Japanese-based automaker plans to notify owners in early October and expects replacement mats to be available at dealerships by late November.
In a statement, Toyota advised owners to regularly check that their floor mat is properly secured and said "under no circumstances should more than one floor mat ever be used in the driver's seating position."
Owners can contact Toyota at 888-270-9371 or 800-331-4331 and Lexus owners can call 800-255-3987 for more information.
On the Web:
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration: www.nhtsa.dot.gov/
Toyota Motor Corp.: www.toyota.com/