Dealership Remote Starts Customer's Mustang Into Pond, Car Totalled

Mustangforums member "luckydawg003" wasn't so lucky when he took his remote starter-equipped, manual transmission Mustang GT to Brandon Ford in Florida for some service. They remote-started the car in gear and it ended up submerged in a holding pond.

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According to lucky, he was at the dealer to pick up his car after some warranty work when the service agent came out with some bad news. When he was going to get the car the agent remote-started the 'Stang while it was in gear with the parking brake off. The car fired up and took off through an empty parking spot, went under a chain link fence and powered itself into a holding pond off the dealer lot where it sank beneath the water.

The dealer has refused to admit responsibility for the incident claiming the lack of a neutral safety switch on the system absolves them of responsibility. The soggy Mustang is totaled and the matter is now in the hands of the insurance companies.

What do you think? Does the dealership owe this guy a new car or is the Mustang owner culpable for installing a remote start system on his car without a neutral safety switch (or for installing a remote starter on a manually equipped car in the first place)?

(Thanks for the tip McMike)

[MustangForums]