Yarmouth Police Photo
Federal highway safety experts are expected to head to Cape Cod to examine a Toyota that a woman drove through the walls of a Yarmouth doctor's office on Tuesday, police said.
The vehicle, which was driven by Ann J. Wilkins, 70, of Harwich, has been impounded at police headquarters. Wilkins contends the car accelerated by itself, her son, David, said late this afternoon, an assertion that raises the specter of the unintended acceleration problem that has plagued Toyota in recent weeks and forced massive recalls.
The car struck the wall of the Cape Cod Plastic and Hand Surgery office at about 1:24 p.m. penetrating about 10 feet into the building before stopping, police said. Wilkins suffered minor injuries in the crash, police said.
David Wilkins, 39, of Cambridge answered the phone at his mother's home late this afternoon and said she was recovering there.
He said the RAV4 had undergone a recall repair last month.
"What happened," he said, "was that she was going to park at the doctor's office. She put her foot on the brake and the car jerked forward. It crashed into the side of the building. When she looked down, her foot was on the brake."
Wilkins said his mother had a "perfect driving record. In all the years, she's never been in an accident, never been pulled over. Our feeling is our mom put her foot on the brake and the car accelerated."
He said he welcomed the NHTSA investigation. "I think it's important that it's done right, that they figure it out and we come to a conclusion. I think that benefits not only my family, but it also benefits others, and I think it's a good step forward."
He also said the family was extremely relieved that no one else was injured in the accident.
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