A Seattle Accident lawyer reviews four common causes of sudden acceleration car accidents, including car defects, medical emergency, and pedal confusion.

Four Common Causes of Sudden Acceleration Car Accidents

This week, we covered a tragic, fatal Seattle car accident in which an elderly couple, both long-times Washington State residents in their 90s, lost their lives when their car veered off of the road and struck a tree. Witnesses to the crash say the car that 91-year-old Dan Riley and 93-year-old Rose Riley were in suddenly accelerated before crashing into a tree.


Sudden acceleration accidents and unintended acceleration accidents can be difficult for police to investigate and hard for questioning family members to understand. Especially if the driver and occupants of the car do not survive the accident, answers can be hard to come by.


Here are the four most common causes of sudden acceleration car accidents:

  • Medical Emergency. Heart attacks, strokes, and seizures can be deadly – and even more so when the sufferer is driving at the time of the attack. In some cases, a driver suffering from a medical issue may press their foot down on the accelerator while in distress. 
  • Pedal confusion. After a rash of sudden acceleration accidents a few years ago, a study found that many of these issues were not caused by car defects as thought, but rather by simple pedal confusion. This is especially common with older drivers and drivers who are getting behind the wheel of a car that is not familiar to them. 
  • Defective cars. In some cases, a floor mat can become caught under a pedal, moisture can become trapped in the gas pedal, or an electronic issue can cause unintended acceleration. 
  • Suicide. Occasionally, a lone driver will accelerate at high speeds into a wall, into another object, off a cliff, or into a body of water. In some of these instances, investigators find that the driver was attempting to end their life through a high-speed car accident.


Have you or a loved one been involved in a sudden acceleration accident or unintended acceleration accident? Do you believe that the accident was caused by poor car design, a defective car part, or another negligent party? Contact the Seattle car accident attorneys at Andrew Kim Law Firm today to learn more about your case and whether or not you should take legal action. Andrew Kim offers potential clients free, private legal consultations.