It was reported that young girl was killed by a driver apparently using Face Time on his iPhone, her parents in reaction have launched a lawsuit against iPhone-maker Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL).
According to the lawsuit the firm should have had a feature to deactivated use of the video-chat application while driving. The lawsuit points to a patent for a feature for drivers filed by Apple in 2008. Apple has not yet responded to requests for comment.
The sad incident happened on a Texan road on Christmas Eve 2014. Five-year-old Moriah Modisette consequently died.
The lawsuit states that the parents James and Bethany Modisette were looking for damages for “the defendant’s wrongful failure to install and implement the safer, alternative design for which it sought a patent in December 2008”.
The patent, which was issued by the US patent office in April 2014 aimed to lock out users while they were driving.
In an accident the driver involved in the crash, Garrett Wilhelm, drove his SUV into the back of the Modisette family’s vehicle while travelling at high speeds.
According to the lawsuit, he told police he was using FaceTime at the time of the crash and that the application was still active when police found his phone at the scene. Mr Wilhelm is facing a jury trial on manslaughter charges in February.
The matter of driver disruption has turn out to be a massive concern to motor safety specialists in recent years.
Meanwhile the claim quoted plenty studies into the use of tech while driving, including one for telecoms firm AT&T which found that 43% of teenagers admitted to texting or emailing while driving.
Furthermore a research by the RAC recently established that the number of drivers unlawfully using mobile phones at the wheel was increasing. The UK government reportedly plans to double fines and points on licenses for using a mobile while driving.