In a recent Huffington Post article, Anapol Weiss Shareholder and End Distracted Driving (EndDD.org) Founder Joel Feldman commented on a highly publicized lawsuit in which a young woman was allegedly using the Snapchat application while driving at excessive speeds when she collided with another vehicle and severely injured the other driver.
According to Georgia lawsuit Maynard v. McGee and Snapchat, Inc., Wentworth Maynard and his wife are suing both Crystal McGee and Snapchat after Maynard suffered a permanent brain injury in the crash.
Feldman explains in his article that the theory for also suing Snapchat is that it is alleged that Snapchat’s “speed filter” encouraged McGee to drive at an excessive and dangerous speed. The filter shows users the speed at which the user is going and captures it on the video or photo being taken. It was reported that McGee was traveling at 107 mph at the time of the car accident.
In addition to examining the potential legal liability of Snapchat, Feldman also questions the company’s moral responsibility. He asks, “…what should and can Snapchat do today to prevent future tragedies regardless of its technical legal responsibility in this specific case? Snapchat should remove the speed filter and work with other app manufacturers in education campaigns to educate users about the dangers of distracted driving.”
Distracted Driving is a nationwide epidemic. In fact, 3,179 people were killed and 431,000 were injured in auto collisions involving distracted drivers in 2014 alone.
Along with the Partnership for Distracted Driving, EndDD.org is working to have smartphone application manufacturers provide warnings on their apps about not using them while driving. To see the petition, click here.
Feldman knows that through tragedy can come positive change. He founded EndDD.org after his daughter, Casey, was killed by a distracted driver in 2009. Feldman suggests Snapchat use this tragic case as “…an opportunity to save lives by doing the right thing.”
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