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Monday
Feb252013

Hyundai Allegedly Takes Teen on ‘Nightmare’ Ride

ABC News(ROCKWALL COUNTY, Texas) -- A Texas teenager suffered several broken bones after his Hyundai allegedly took him on a terrifying ride on a Texas Highway with, he claims, no way to stop the car.

Elez Lushaj, 16, was driving on Highway 183 in Rockwall County, Texas, Dec. 2 when his 2011 Hyundai Elantra reportedly accelerated out of control, reaching speeds of over 100 miles per hour, according to police.

Unable to slow down, Lushaj traveled at break-neck speed for nearly 120 miles, finally losing control of the vehicle when a semi pulled in front of him, causing the car to flip four times before coming to rest on the side of the highway.

Rockwall County Deputy Tim Williamson told ABC News the teen was in relatively good shape after wrecking at such a high speed.  "His arm may have been broken, they had to cut him out of the car but he was talking and alert when we walked up to him,” he said.

Lushaj made a frantic 911 call shortly after the car accelerated.  In the call, operators are heard struggling to come up with a way to slow the car down, telling Lushaj to turn off the ignition, or put the vehicle in neutral.

When the teen was unable to decelerate, deputy Williamson was dispatched to help shepherd the out-of-control vehicle away from traffic, capturing the nightmare ride on his car’s dashboard camera.

“It took me about five miles to catch up to him,” said Williamson.  "Right about the 125 [-miles-per-hour] mark is roughly how fast I was going to stay in front of him.”

The dashboard camera video shows Lushaj’s vehicle swerving at times onto the shoulder at high speeds to avoid traffic.

“He was doing a pretty good job avoiding traffic, avoiding any road obstacles, considering how inexperienced he was given his age,” Williamson remarked.

According to WFAA-TV, the teen’s father called the incident “a nightmare” and claimed that his son would likely have permanent damage, but said they are declining further comment based on advice from their attorney.

Hyundai, however, is doubtful of the teen’s story.

“It is extremely unlikely there would be simultaneous and spontaneous failure of the braking, acceleration and transmission all at the same time,” Hyundai public relations manager Jim Trainor told ABC News in an emailed statement.

According to the Rockwall County Sheriff’s department, the incident took place on Dec. 2 and the incident was not investigated because no criminal charges were filed.  It is unclear at this point why the incident was not reported to Hyundai until now.

“We have never heard from the driver, his family nor their representatives and have not had a chance to inspect the car in order to determine what went on here,” the Hyundai statement continued. “We would like to speak with the parties involved and take a look at the car. And we’d like to find out why this hadn’t come to our attention for almost three months.”

 

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ABC News Radio