This is causing a stir...
A few months ago, Sean from AutotopiaLA was involved in a major accident that left him and the driver in various states of injury. On his side, four teeth were smashed needing replacement, while his lip had to be stitched up from some massive damage. Russ, the driver, also ended up "blowing his right elbow out," which could mean anything from spraining to breaking, but either way, they are both okay now. The reason for all of their injuries was the fact that neither were wearing their harnesses but opted instead to only wear the lap belt. Both parties have admitted their faulty decision-making skills in this department, so we won't give them any more grief on it, but the way AutotopiaLA responded to the crash has some people fired up.
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After explaining that both men were fine and showing videos from multiple angles of the crash, the team delved into what actually happened. Both men noticed the throttle sticking at a red light just briefly before the infamous incident. The car was idling at around 2,200 rpm, which is high even for a hazardous race car, especially in an automatic. It's not uncommon for a custom vehicle to have throttle-sticking issues, but the correct course of action is to get the car off the road as soon as possible and even have it towed if necessary. Instead, Russ continued driving, and we all know how the guests go on the show while also riding the brakes to keep the speed low.
Constantly riding your brakes causes them to heat up and suffer brake fade, which is precisely what happened shortly after taking off from another traffic light. Losing brakes and heading towards a wall of stopped cars, the driver began trying to swerve to control speed, which clearly didn't work and then attempted to merge with the turning lane. This was all happening while there was a free patch of grass to their right, and since they were on the right-most lane, it's fair to say that would have been a better direction to aim for. Instead, at around 45 miles per hour, they crashed into the back of a minivan, which was likely because it would be the safer vehicle to hit.
The problem is that minivans are typically driven by parents with their children in the back seats, which would have put them at the most risk had there been any kids in the vehicle. Unfortunately, instead of aiming for an area that would have minimized human danger at the cost of probably hurting the car, the driver tried to save his truck and, as such, implicated two other vehicles demolishing his and the minivan while scraping another. Recently, Autopia LA came out with a video in which they did not even mention if the passengers of the other vehicles involved were okay and have been getting a lot of flack for it. Understandably, this looks like an attempt to cover up any damage done to the other drivers and their cars while still answering enough questions to put the incident in the rear view.
The comments section has exploded with anger surrounding their portrait of events and seemingly disingenuous efforts to avoid admission of fault. Eventually, Russ also commented on the video, pointing out that the other drivers were not harmed and that everyone was okay. He also seems to understand that he was wrong for not checking the issue and continuing to drive, for which he has been forgiven by most of the commenters who replied due to his acceptance of blame and subsequent apology. It may seem like we're against Sean on this one, but in reality, it looks like a series of unfortunate oversights that any of us could have made. Only the response video was a real issue for most of the negative commenters, and there were a lot of those. Ultimately we hope that the team gets back on track and moves past the incident, having learned a lesson about not getting too caught up in the fun of shooting a video to fix apparent issues and accepting fault when necessary.