WASHINGTON (AP) - Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood now says he misspoke when telling owners of recalled Toyotas to stop driving them. Instead, LaHood says take them to dealerships to get them repaired.
LaHood told reporters it was "obviously a misstatement" when he told a House panel earlier Wednesday that he would advise owners not to drive recalled vehicles. The remark came during testimony to the Appropriations subcommittee on transportation.
Toyota's most recent recall in the United States affects 2.3 million vehicles with the potential for sticking gas pedals. Toyota announced on Monday they had found a solution that involved reinforcing the pedal assembly with a part that is being rushed to dealerships.
The problem, however, is that drivers are not likely to get a quick fix. Toyota told dealers in a letter on Tuesday that "parts and technical instructions will begin arriving this week for you to begin initiating repairs."
LaHood also acknowledged that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is investigating Toyotas not just for problems with gas pedals, but for problems with the electrical systems, as well.
"We will also be investigating the electronic components that are in these cars and if they're not safe, we'll have Toyota take a look at that," LaHood said.
He said that Toyota has been cooperative in the investigations.
Toyota has recalled millions of vehicles in recent weeks due to problems with sticking gas pedals that cause the vehicles to accelerate out of control and later halted the sale of the eight vehicles involved in the recall.
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