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Woman returns Camry to dealership in protest

February 3, 2010 12:00:00 AM PST
An Arizona woman is waging a one-woman protest against Toyota. She's mad about the gas-pedal recall. So, despite safety warnings, she drove her late-model Camry to the Toyota dealership in Cerritos to return it Anna Judd drives her Toyota Camry for the last time.

"It's a safety issue for me and my family," said Judd.

Judd, 41, says her vehicle is among the millions being recalled by Toyota due to problems with accelerator pedals that could cause the car to speed up unintentionally.

"Ever since this recall has been going on, I've been scared to death to drive it," said Judd.

Judd drove her car all the way from Payson, Arizona, to the dealership in Cerritos where she bought the car more than a year ago.

"I'm hoping I can just call it quits on it and walk away," said Judd.

In just a few minutes, Judd did just that, leaving her car and her keys in the service department.

"I'm done with this," said Judd. "They said they could fix the problem today. I doubt that seriously."

An official with the dealership could not go on camera but said he was surprised by her actions, and said that if her car was included in the recall they would take steps to fix it.

Judd paid more than $20,000 for the car and says she still owes $18,000.

That could hurt your credit rating, that you're willing to do that to get rid of your car?.

"They knew about this problem and they still kept it quiet," said Judd.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said Toyota issued the recall only after pressure from the government. Toyota disputes that and said the company's vehicles were safe to drive despite the recall, and that the situation is rare and does not occur suddenly.

That's no reassurance for Judd as she walks away from her Camry. She calls it her own way of protesting and drives off in her brand new Hyundai.