Filed under: Motorsports , Coupe , Performance , Europe , Safety , Videos , Toyota There are plenty of dangers to contend with at a track day . High speeds, inexperienced drivers, faulty equipment and foul weather can all play havoc on an otherwise friendly fender-to-fender weekend. We can now add carbon monoxide poisoning to the list of potential threats. One Finnish Toyota MR2 owner took his machine out for a quick sprint at Ahvenisto just outside of Hameenlinna. After a few minutes behind the wheel, the driver begins struggling to keep control of his car, eventually spinning into the infield. He maneuvers back on track and pulls off, and it isn’t long before he blacks out entirely. Later, he would have no recollection of anything after the car hit the grass. He stays unconscious for nearly 11 minutes before rescue workers resort to smashing his passenger window to gain access. By the time he receives medical attention, his blood was packed with 67 percent carbon monoxide. Any longer in the vehicle’s cabin and the day very well could have been his last.
Filed under: SUV , Etc. , Toyota , Canada , Off-Road UPDATE: Images removed at request of owner. The FJ Cruiser in the picture above was turned into a Transformers -like casualty after an acetylene tank inside the cabin blew up. The Canadian you see hugging the FJ is its owner, who happened to be in the SUV when that acetylene tank exploded. According to his account of the event, the cap on the sealed tank became loose before he parked the truck in his garage overnight. The following morning, the ripe smell of acetylene filled the FJ, so he opened its doors to air it out. Wanting to speed the job along, he pulled the truck out of the garage – yes, that involved starting it. Then, while still inside the FJ, he hit the switch to roll down the passenger-side power window, and, as the old Batman series would have said, “KA-BOOM!” Obviously, he lived. Not just that, he suffered nothing more than a loss of hearing in his right ear and a scratch. Which is not a bad way to say, “Christmas came early.” Have a look at the aftermath in the mage gallery, and in case you needed a reminder, don’t try this at home.
Filed under: Etc. , Government/Legal , Safety , Cadillac , Toyota , Fiat The 2012 Toyota Camry and 2012 Cadillac CTS have joined the ranks of vehicles that have earned the coveted five-star safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration . The vehicles mark the 15th and 16th models to nab the top rating under the tougher NHTSA crash test standards enacted for 2011 models. Last year, the 2011 Camry took home four stars in the evaluations. Toyota reminds us that the 2012 Camry is built with high-strength steel to help protect the passenger cell against deflection in the event of an accident, and that the vehicle comes standard with 10 airbags, all of which contribute to the new model’s superior score. The Fiat 500 , meanwhile, didn’t fare so well under the range of crash evaluations. The tiny hatchback collected just three stars overall. The side-impact test was particularly cruel to the Italian compact, with NHTSA awarding the vehicle two stars in that category – a somewhat surprising result considering that Fiat went to the trouble of redesigning the 500 for U.S. crash test compatibility. The 500 finds itself in the company of the Dodge Caliber and outgoing Ford Escape as the only models tested so far to receive the three-star designation.