Apple faces a new class-action lawsuit filed in California that accuses it of not implementing a technology that can prevent users from texting while driving. The lawsuit accuses Apple of putting profits ahead of user safety as it refuses to implement this safety system, according to 9to5Mac.
Texting and driving very risky
MLG Automotive Law filed the lawsuit at the Los Angeles County Superior Court. It centers around plaintiff Julio Ceja, who met with a car accident when a driver allegedly him while using her iPhone behind the wheel. This far-reaching lawsuit claims that the iPhone is responsible for as many as 52,000 car accidents in California per year and 312 deaths per year on average.
Citing data from the U.S. Department of Transportation, the lawsuit claims that 1.5 million people are texting and driving at any given moment. The government agency also claims that the risk of accidents involved with texting and driving is six times higher than it is with drunk driving, notes 9to5Mac.
Jonathan Michaels, a founding member of MLG Automotive Law, said, “Texting and driving has become one of the most serious issues that confronts all of us on a daily basis. Legislating against drivers will unfortunately not solve the problem. The relationship consumers have with their phones is just too great, and the ability to slide under the eye of the law is just too easy. Embedding lock-out devices is the only solution.”
Is locking out devices the only solution for Apple?
Apple has had the technology to prevent texting and driving since 2008, claims the lawsuit. It also points to a patent granted to the company in 2014 for a technology that could block users from texting and driving. Until Apple introduces some form of lock-out device that can deter users from texting while driving, it should be barred from selling iPhones in the state of California, demands the class-action lawsuit.
According to 9to5Mac, several things need to be noted here. First, there is no mention in the lawsuit of current solutions such as hands-free Siri and CarPlay. Also the suit singles out Apple, when in reality, not all who text and drive use Apple devices but a variety of devices from other manufacturers.
Just a month ago in a similar lawsuit, Apple was accused of distracting a driver who was using FaceTime while driving, leading to a fatal car crash. It also suggested the use of technology to lock out iPhone use while driving and the 2014 patent as well. But unlike this case, it seeks damages and medical expenses instead of forcing Apple to implement a solution, notes Apple Insider.