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Prius steering column noise and movement

The steering column on my 2006 Prius occasionally makes strange grinding/clicking noises and will move in a jerky way slightly on its own, generally in city traffic. At least I’ve never noticed it on the highway

How does the steering column move?
Does the steering wheel involuntarily turn left and right in your hands, or does the steering column jerk up and down?

If the wheel turns to the left and right without any input from you, that symptom, coupled with the noises, makes me suspect the electric power steering mechanism as the source of the problem.

On the other hand, if the entire column and wheel jerk upward and downward when you hit a bump in the road, then I would suspect a problem relating to the attachment of the steering column to the chassis.

Either of these is a potential safety problem, so I would suggest that you not delay having this looked at. There is even a chance that there is a Technical Service Bulletin (TSB) regarding problems with the electric power steering mechanism, so I would suggest checking with the dealer’s service department regarding that issue.

The steering wheel moves involuntarily left and right, just a little bit. It doesn’t jerk up and down. So I’ll have the electric power steering mechanism checked. Sounds expensive. I hope it’s an issue in the TSB that will be covered by Toyota. Thanks for your help.