CLEVELAND (WJW) — A Cleveland man made national headlines when the FOX 8 I-Team revealed he’d been trapped in his own car for 14 hours, and now we’ve found what happened to him is happening to other people just like you.
The problem may be more common than you might think.
Last year, we introduced you to Pete Pyros. He was trapped, suffering on a hot summer day. The electronics system in his car went dead. He couldn’t find any emergency switch to unlock the car doors.
Meantime, we’ve reviewed a letter from the US Department of Transportation to Pete’s attorney. It says, in part, the agency has “received reports similar to yours…concerning allegations of occupant entrapment.”
Pete ended up stuck in his garage, didn’t have the car manual, couldn’t break a window, and had no phone.
That letter from the feds also said, “We have seen an increase in the number of manufacturers that are producing vehicles without the appearance of mechanical door release mechanisms.”
Drivers we met Thursday told us they, too, had never thought about this. And, they had no idea where to find in their cars any safety latch to open doors normally operated electronically.
Turns out Pete’s car has an emergency lever down along the seats.
In that letter, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) wrote, they’ve found “some vehicles without a secondary release mechanism.”
NHTSA will “monitor the issue.”
Attorney John Meros is working with Pete Pyros. He has called for a recall of all vehicles with no back-up for locked doors and no warning system.
However, NHTSA has not yet opened a full investigation of the problem.
A neighbor finally helped rescue Pete. He says God gave him a second chance.
He added, “I appreciate every minute.”