An American couple by the names of James and Bethany Modisette sued Apple claiming that the Cupertino giant’s FaceTime app which ‘distracted’ and drove the car into their vehicle killing their 5-year-old daughter Moriah in the process. According to reports, the Modisette couple, along with their two daughters on Christmas eve in 2014 before they were stopped due to blockage by the police. However, the driver of the vehicle behind them, Garrett Wilhelm had failed to stop his SUV at 105 km/hr and crashed on the former’s vehicle. The SUV tore the Modisette’s Camry apart and rode up over the top. While Bethany and the older daughter managed to escape the car, James and 5-year-old Moriah had to be extracted by rescue workers.
5-year-old Moriah who had been strapped to a booster seat during the crash was immediately flown to a nearby hospital but could not be revived. The Texan couple has reportedly filed a lawsuit in California Superior court in Santa Clara Country claiming that the tech giant failed to warn its users about the dangers of misusing its products or to instruct on its safe usage. According to ABC News, the Texan couple is suing Apple for damages based on the fact that the tech giant had failed to implement a safer and alternative design for their video chatting app which could have helped to prevent the driver from using the app while driving at such a speed.
The lawsuit states that as a result of the distraction caused by FaceTime the SUV driver struck the Modisette family at full highway speed from the behind, which had caused their Camry to propel forward, rotate and come to a final rest at an angle facing the wrong direction in the right lane of traffic. The driver, Garret Wilhelm admitted to the police that he was using FaceTime on his iPhone at the time of the crash. The lawsuit further states that the concerned iPhone was located on the spot with the FaceTime app still working.
The Modisette family, in the lawsuit, assert that at the time of the accident, the iPhone that was being used by Wilhelm had the necessary hardware to automatically disable or lock out the ability to use the concerned FaceTime app. It was, however, Apple that failed to configure the iPhone to do so despite p[ossessing the technical capability to do so.