Driver stuck in runaway EV
One driver has had a rather socking experience with his new electric vehicle.
The ‘catastrophic’ event meant the driver was unable to slow or stop his vehicle as it careered through traffic lights and round roundabouts, as he dodged the potential hazards.
53 year-old Glasgow man, Brian Morrison, spoke to the BBC.
He was heading home from work on Sunday night. He was driving his brand new MG ZS EV when it became stuck travelling at 30mph.
Morrison said he was lucky that the incident had taken place after 22:00 on a Sunday night when the roads were quiet.
“I realised something was wrong when I was coming up to a roundabout and went to slow down but it didn’t do it,” he said.
“Then I heard a loud grinding noise that sounded like brake pads, but because it was such a new car I knew it couldn’t be a problem with them.
“I managed to get around the roundabout going at about 30mph and then had a long road ahead of me, so I assumed it would stop without me accelerating – but it didn’t.”
More than speed
Mr Morrison has mobility issues, so he was unable to escape the car travelling at 30mph by jumping out.
He added: “It might not sound like it is very fast, but when you have no control over the speed and you’re completely stuck inside, it’s terrifying.”
Mr Morrison initially called his wife in a panic to ask her to warn vehicles ahead of him that he could not stop his car.
He called 999 when he grew concerned about crashing into pedestrians and navigating more roundabouts and traffic lights.
“The car was just running away on its own, there was nothing I could do,” he said.
“When I dialled 999, they sent police to help and put some engineers on the line to try and solve the problem, and they were asking if it was a self-driving car.
“It was the first time that the call handlers had experienced the issue, and they had no idea what to do.”
‘I can’t stop’
Soon after he made the call, three police vehicles arrived and drove in front and behind the car.
No giving way
He said: “I was 100% concentrating on my steering, so when a police van pulled up besides me and asked if I was Brian and if I was okay, I just yelled ‘no I’m not, I can’t stop’.”
Police asked Mr Morrison to throw his electronic key through their van window before driving off, and then tried forcibly shutting off the engine – but nothing could stop the car.
He was also asked to hold the power button for a couple of seconds which also failed to stop it and the entire dashboard lit up with faults
Officers decided to get him to crash into the back of their van before he got into a more built-up area.
The police could not move their car as the electric vehicle would keep moving, so they had to wait for the RAC to arrive.
A shocking event
“I still have no idea what happened,” he said. “But when the RAC got to me about three hours later, he plugged in the car to do a diagnostic check and there was pages of faults.
“He said he had never seen anything like it and decided he was not willing to turn the engine on to see what was wrong.”
MG Motor UK said it was trying to resolve the matter.
A spokesman said: “MG Motor UK has been urgently trying to make contact with Mr Morrison so that his vehicle can be fully inspected by our engineering team.
“We take this matter very seriously and now that contact has been made, we are making every effort to resolve matters quickly and comprehensively for him.”
Mr Morrison’s insurance said they were investigating the incident, which has left him unsure if he would drive another electric vehicle again.
He added: “I don’t know if I’ll get another, frankly I’ve not even tried driving my wife’s car – it was a terrifying experience.”