Teen Snapchats To Record Vehicle Speed
Snapchat’s filter that lets drivers share how fast the are travelling while taking selfies is now being blamed for a crash that left a car crash victim with severe traumatic brain injuries.
The plaintiff in the lawsuit in the U.S. was merging onto a four-lane highway outside of Atlanta, Georgia when his car was struck with such force that it crossed the highway left lane and crashed into the highway embankment. The plaintiff, Wentworth Maynard sustained injuries and is now suing for the cost of his medical bills and injuries.
The driver who allegedly struck Mr. Maynard, Christal McGee is alledged to have been using a filter that the Snapchat app has that lets drivers share how fast they are travelling while they take a selfie. The lawsuit suggests that Ms. McGee wanted to post an image of herself driving at a high speed. Apparently she just wanted the car to get to 100 miles per hour to post on Snapchat according to her lawyer.
Teen Distracted by Cellphone
Unfortunately, while being distracted by her phone, Ms. McGee allegedly did not notice the plaintiff’s vehicle pull out onto the road. According to a passenger in Ms. McGee’s car, she hit 113 mph in a speed limit zone of 55 mph.
To add insult to injury, Ms. McGee also decided to Snapchat her journey in the ambulance on a gurney, showing her injuries. The lawsuit filed by Mr. Maynard also includes Snapchat, who according to the filing, has been aware of previous collisions where the app was used to record driving at high speeds. The social media company has chosen not to remove the speed filter. According to the court filing, Snapchat put a product a product into the marketplace that is dangerous that did not provide any safeguards or warnings for its users.
In a society that continues to drive distracted, clearly despite continued education, teens are not getting the message when it comes to distracted driving behaviours. Young Drivers of Canada suggests that teen action is rooted in the Fear of Missing Out or FOMO. Teens want to be part of the crowd at all times, and that includes being active on social media platforms to showcase the latest “craze” while driving. In this particular instance, the alleged cause of the crash was the teen’s focus was to increase the speed of her vehicle and post it on Snapchat with the mph filter. It will be interesting to see how the court handles this case and what it will say when it comes to determining what responsibility if any, social media platforms have when it comes distracted driving.