Mississippi residents may be interested in a lawsuit filed in January 2017 against Apple. If the lawsuit is successful, Apple would be required to install software on its phones that would prevent the user from texting while driving. The plaintiffs argue that this would help to prevent accidents caused by distracted drivers.
According to the lawsuit, Apple will not need to develop any new technology in order to make the change. It has had the technology since 2008, and it was patented in 2014. Apple has refrained from installing the feature on any of its phones. The lawsuit would require both that new phones come installed with the features and that old phones would require a mandated update.
There is no doubt that distracted driving, often caused by cellphone usage, is a serious problem on the road. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that texting while driving is six times more dangerous than drunk driving and that as many as 1.5 million drivers are texting while driving at any given moment. The National Safety Council has further reported that approximately one-quarter of all accidents in the U.S. are the result of texting while driving. Numerous states have outlawed texting while driving and required hands-free only phone use, but these laws have proven notoriously difficult to enforce.
While the laws regarding cell phone usage in cars may change and improve, drivers still need to realize that this kind of behavior resulting in a car collision can be devastating to occupants of other vehicles. A personal injury attorney representing an injured victim will often have the opportunity to review cellphone records and other evidence in order to demonstrate that the driver was distracted at the time of the crash and should thus be held financially responsible.