Family sues Apple for fatal accident allegedly caused by FaceTime

Posted:  January 3, 2017   By:    12 comments   


We’ve seen plenty of reports about people suing Apple, but this may be the most surprising one yet. A couple from Texas is suing the tech giant on claims that FaceTime distracted a driver who crashed into their family car, killing the couple’s 5-year-old daughter.

A report from ABC News states that the fatal accident occurred on Christmas eve in 2014 near Dallas where the Modisette family was on the road in their Toyota Camry. While they were on the highway, the family had to slow or stop their car due to police activity ahead which had caused a traffic jam.

Another driver, Garrett Wilhelm, was travelling in his Toyota 4Runner in the same direction behind the Modisette’s car, had his attention allegedly diverted from the road by his smartphone’s FaceTime application.

Because of that, the Garrett crashed into the Modisette family from behind at full highway speed (about 100km/h). The accident took the life of the Modisette’s 5-year-old daughter Moriah, while severely injuring father James and injuring mother Bethany and Moriah’s sister Isabella.

ABC News reports that the couple, James and Bethany Modisette, is suing Apple for not implementing a “safer, alternative design” for FaceTime which could have prevented the use of the application while someone was driving at highway speeds. The suit also claims that Apple failed “to warn users that the product was likely to be dangerous when used or misused” or to instruct safe use.

The Modisettes also claim that, at the time of the collision, Garrett’s iPhone had the necessary hardware to be configured with the software to automatically lock-out the ability to use FaceTime.

“However, Apple failed to configure the iPhone to automatically ‘lock-out’ the ability to utilise ‘FaceTime’ while driving at highway speeds, despite having the technical capability to do so,” the suit continued.

What do you guys think of this? Should Apple be blamed, or was it really the driver who is at fault here? Let me know in the comments below.


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12 Comments for Family sues Apple for fatal accident allegedly caused by FaceTime


Please keep us up to date with this case. Would love to see how Apple reacts to this. Anyway, the driver is at fault here and should know better to not use his phone while driving. I don’t see why would they blame Apple for this since it could happen with any app not just FaceTime smh.

    derek law

    Apple has more cash to pay than the drivers car insurance. I think Apple has more cash reserves than many developed countries at >USD200 billion.


dumb Americans. the fault lies with the driver. obviously, they want money. it's not going to stick in court.

    Surprise Surprise

    You'll be surprised by American court system. Waze made you click on "Passenger" button to avoid this kind of lawsuit.


Another case of wet dog and microwave oven


    i thought it was a wet cat


If Apple had implemented what the family suggested in their lawsuit it will not be possible for passengers travelling in cars or trains to use Facetime.


    hmm, cannot wait meh until the car stop? so urgent have to immediately facetime in the car even? wonder how the world survive before smartphone was invented.
    i really dont understand when i see loads of STUPID drivers texting, whatspp, facebook or whatever while driving. nothing is that important that it cant wait till you reach your destination. the car is a heavy machinery and you should pay attention when you are operating it! that stupid tweet to say where you are going or to post some insignificant event can blardy wait!


Come on man, it's not specifically about Facetime or Apple, it's about the driver's reckless act while driving, It solely due to the driver's irresponsible & reckless attitude, It's self explanatory that using phone while driving may cause harm or fatal accident. The driver clearly not follow those rules. I believe is nothing doing with the Apple or Facetime & It sounds irrelevant to the current situation.


Please sue the police who having road block, please sue Toyota who make the 4Runner go with 100km/h, again, please sue Toyota as it makes a Camry which put you on the road, please sue the government who make the highway…


I am sorry about the accident and the loss of life, but still, make sense… obviously the driver can't pay as much as Apple able to…