Could this accident be to blame for our current transmission problems?

Dear Car Talk

Dear Car Talk | Nov 01, 1995

Dear Tom and Ray:

Our car was involved in an accident while parked on a street. It was pushed about 10 feet while locked in Park. Since then, our transmission hasn't been the same. It is slowly getting worse. It winds out and slips a lot. Could it be possible that the accident is to blame for this?

RAY: Sorry, Luke. I know you want to "collect" from the guy who hit you and get a rebuilt transmission out of the deal, too. But there's no connection here. When the car is in Park, nothing inside the transmission can turn. So I can't imagine how getting pushed in Park would do any internal damage to the transmission (which is what your symptoms describe).

TOM: The only thing that could happen is you might bend or break the parking pawl (the device that locks the wheels and keeps the car from moving when you're in Park). But even that's unlikely. You probably just dragged the wheels ten feet. So I think you're out of luck, Luke.

RAY: On the other hand, if there's a large settlement involved, we'd be glad to serve as expert witnesses testifying that there's a DIRECT connection between the accident and the transmission problem. Just contact our lawyers at the "Dream Team" in Los Angeles.

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