Aaron Widmar
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Couple Locked Inside a Keyless Car Nearly Wins Darwin Award

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door_handle_by_PatZa locked inside a keyless car

Who knew this could cause such confusion?
Photo: PatZa

If you believe automotive technology is developing faster than humanity can keep up with comprehending it, this news story will prove your point.

A couple in New Zealand almost didn’t make it out of their car alive when they couldn’t figure out how to exit it. Their inability to exit their Mazda3 had them locked inside a keyless car for almost 13 hours.


Related: The Mazda3 is actually a good investment to have


After Getting Locked Inside a Keyless Car, This Couple Will Always Remember the Fifth of November

While everyone in the little town of Alexandra, Otago (population less than 5,000) was out celebrating Guy Fawkes Day, Mollieanne (65) and Brian Smith (68) were locked in a keyless car in their own garage. At least, they assumed they were.

A series of events led the couple to believe they were stuck in their newly-purchased Mazda3 hatchback with no way of escape: the remote keyless entry fob was outside the car, the car manual was left in the house, it was “late” (apparently 7:00pm is late for some people), everyone was out celebrating the holiday

Rather than thinking to unlock the vehicle the traditional way, as it has been done for decades, the couple attempted to break through the glass with car jack (which failed due to their weakened state) and honking the horn (which failed, according to Mollieanne, because the Guy Fawkes Day fireworks were too loud).

Calling this a near-death experience isn’t an exaggeration. The couple was discovered by neighbors at 7:45am the next day, with Mrs. Smith unconscious and Mr. Smith struggling to breathe. According to emergency services, they were potentially less than an hour away from death.

The Smiths blamed much of it on their confusion about how keyless entry worked, pointing to their dealership salesman who supposedly told them the car wouldn’t work without the transponder.

car-door-black handle lock

Drat! Foiled by a car door again!
Photo: Kapa65 via Pixabay public domain

Two Ways of Reacting to the Life-Changing Incident

It wouldn’t be a humorous story had the couple not lived to tell about it, and we’re thankful they’re alive. It’s questionable whether authorities and forensics would’ve been able to identify why the couple was sitting in their vehicle so long.

But the story doesn’t end here.

Mr. Smith, who couldn’t figure out a way to unlock the door, admitted, “Once I found out how simple it was to unlock it I kicked myself that I did not find the way out…I had this mind-set that I did not have the transponder [so I could not get out].”

Mrs. Smith, on the other hand, has reacted much differently, “going public” with her plight to raise awareness about keyless vehicle dangers, receiving support from multiple elderly folks.

This entire incident largely occurred because the New Zealand couple assumed they couldn’t get out of their own car. And we all know what happens when someone assumes, right?

Your life becomes a reenactment of a Family Guy joke.


Related: Mazda does good things in many people’s lives


Source: Otago Daily Times
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  • Aaron WidmarSenior Editor

    Aaron is unashamed to be a native Clevelander and the proud driver of a 1995 Saturn SC-2 (knock on wood). He gleefully utilizes his background in theater, literature, and communication to dramatically recite his own articles to nearby youth. Mr. Widmar happily resides in Dayton, Ohio with his magnificent wife, Vicki, but is often on the road with her exploring new destinations. Aaron has high aspirations for his writing career but often gets distracted pondering the profound nature of the human condition and forgets what he was writing... See more articles by Aaron.

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  • BecauseStupid

    ROFLMFAO, you have to be kidding “Raising the awareness of the dangers of keyless vehicles”…you have got to be joking. How about raising the awareness of the dangers of letting old people have vehicles.

  • John

    You’re telling me, in 13 hours they didn’t try the handle even once? That’s mind-boggling.

  • https://www.facebook.com/kevin.snyder.3363 Kevin Snyder

    No. They did NOT nearly win a Darwin award; at 65 and 68 they’ve presumably already passed on their congenital idiocy to another generation.

    • http://wwwendth.wordpress.com Winona Winkler Wendth

      TWO more generations . . . it’s very too late.

  • ringo

    If they were 65 and 68, the Darwin Award wouldn’t apply…

  • Teddy

    You sure this isn’t a story from “The Onion” news…it’s ALMOST unbelievable.

  • Gianni

    this is the twilight zone hyped 10 times: what about getting IN the car, dumbos!!! How did you do that, with or without your…. (brain) transponder? How about raising the awareness IN those people that they need to see a shrink..?

  • Susan Smith

    How did the doors get locked in the first place? If they didn’t have the key to lock them? The doors don’t just lock when you get into your car, you have to either lock them or be going a certain speed. They were parked.

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