safety

144k Lexus recall adds to Toyota’s stuck-accelerator woes

144k Lexus recall adds to Toyota’s stuck-accelerator woes

Toyota can't seem to catch a break from cars that are desperate to accelerate, with the Japanese company recalling a further 144,000 vehicles after spotting issues with mats jamming the gas pedal. Two models of 2010 Lexus SUV - including Toyota's hybrid version - have been added to an existing recall over concerns that the floor mats could inadvertently cause the accelerator pedal to jam.

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Samsung investigating burning Galaxy S III

Samsung investigating burning Galaxy S III

Samsung is investigating a Galaxy S III handset that apparently burst into flames and partially melted, recalling the apparently faulty phone for testing. The Galaxy S III shows significant charring along its bottom edge, along with damage to the polycarbonate back cover, and sparked while in a car mount according to the Dublin owner of the phone ; Samsung subsequently confirmed on its official blog that it would be looking into the accident.

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Euro NCAP publishes survey results on autonomous emergency braking in European vehicles

Euro NCAP publishes survey results on autonomous emergency braking in European vehicles

Euro NCAP has announced that it is publishing the results of a survey on availability of Autonomous Emergency Braking systems in Europe. Euro NCAP is a European safety regulator that provides drivers and automobile makers with realistic and independent assessments of the safety performance for cars sold in Europe. Euro NCAP has also announced that it will include autonomous emergency braking systems technologies in its star ratings starting in 2014.

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Google driverless cars prompt robo safety worries

Google driverless cars prompt robo safety worries

Google's driverless cars being let loose onto the roads of Nevada has re-awakened concerns around robot vehicle security, with experts unconvinced that the increasingly complex kit is safe from malware. Fears around the future vulnerabilities of cars left to guide themselves, though perhaps not of significant concern today in Google's small-scale trial, nonetheless persist given the likelihood of commercial implementations of self-driving hardware, with researchers pointing to a mixed track record in locking down infotainment and other systems in "dumb" cars to-date.

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Fisker Karma blamed for Texas blaze

Fisker Karma blamed for Texas blaze

Green car company Fisker's tough year is about to get worse, with news that one of the luxury Karma EVs is being blamed for a house fire that consumed a garage and two other vehicles. The $100,000 car was less than two months old, the chief fire investigator in Fort Bend County, Texas, told Autoweek, and is being treated by officials as the cause of the blaze; however, Fisker insists that no final report has been made, and that the Karma may not be to blame.

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Advanced millimeter-wave radar to detect pedestrians and cars at intersections

Advanced millimeter-wave radar to detect pedestrians and cars at intersections

Panasonic has announced an interesting new advanced in millimeter-wave radar technology for automotive uses. The new radar technology is designed to detect pedestrians and vehicles in low visibility conditions at intersections. This type of radar can see clearly at night and in rain or snow. It can also see very well against strong direct sunlight, which can blind drivers.

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Alcohol-testing cars less than a decade away

Alcohol-testing cars less than a decade away

Vehicles that refuse to start unless the driver passes an alcohol breathalyzer test are closer than previously believed, with cars that check for intoxication tipped to hit the market within the next decade. Systems using both traditional "breath tubes" and new fingertip sensors are already in the pipeline, the WSJ reports, with manufacturers working with the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers (AAM) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) having "made more progress, faster, than we expected," according to Rob Strassburger, vice president for vehicle safety at the AAM. Yet while driver and passenger safety is the obvious concern, not everyone is keen on their car playing watchdog.

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Don’t bring flaming BMWs indoors warns government

Don’t bring flaming BMWs indoors warns government

Safety regulators in the US have warned owners of certain BMW 5- and 6-series cars that they should park outdoors after a fire risk in over 367,000 vehicles was identified, though BMW insists only one incident has actually been recorded. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) confirmed that a battery cable in certain 2004-2010 BMWs may have been incorrectly attached, with the possibility of overheating and even fire, even when the car is not in use. The issue affects 1.3m cars worldwide.

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Laser liquid scanner could rescue water bottles from pre-flight trash

Laser liquid scanner could rescue water bottles from pre-flight trash

Having to dump your bottled liquids as you go through airport security has become a frustrating addition to flying headaches in recent years, but the awesome power of lasers could soon ensure your flask contains Evian not napalm. Cobalt Light Systems has cooked up the INSIGHT100, a laser scanning system that can differentiate dangerous substances from safe ones while they're still in their container, opening the aircraft doors to water bottles, perfume and toothpaste.

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Apple brings in Fair Labor Association to audit suppliers

Apple brings in Fair Labor Association to audit suppliers

Apple has requested an "ethical manufacturing" check of all its final-assembly suppliers, with the Fair Labor Association (FLA) investigating Foxconn, Quanta, Pegatron and others for signs of worker mistreatment or unsafe conditions. The FLA will look at working and living environments, health and safety provisions, compensation, working hours and communication with management, Apple has said; "We believe that workers everywhere have the right to a safe and fair work environment" CEO Tim Cook said of the independent assessments, which come after the company was singled out for criticism over poor treatment of supply chain employees.

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