Snapchat is to blame for a car crash that saw multiple people injured, according to one of the victims, who is suing the popular app.
The plaintiff is Uber driver Wentworth Maynard, who suffered traumatic brain injuries as a result of the high-speed accident. Maynard’s lawsuit claims that the distracted driver of the car that struck his vehicle at 107 mph on a highway outside of Atlanta, Georgia was busy using Snapchat at the time of the crash.
According to Maynard’s lawyers, Christal McGee was caught up in Snapchat’s miles-per-hour filter, which overlays an image or video on the app with text stating the user’s approximate speed, as she attempted to reach 100 mph. While McGee was using the app, she allegedly hit Maynard’s car, sending it across the left lane and into an embankment.
Maynard was hospitalized for several weeks, while McGee suffered only minor injuries. The lawsuit adds that shortly after the accident, McGee even posted an image to Snapchat which saw her strapped to her gurney with blood on her forehead. The caption read, “Lucky to be alive.”
Maynard’s civil lawsuit seeks to hold both Snapchat and McGee responsible for “the medical bills and lifelong care [he] … now requires.”
“This case is unique in that we have clear evidence linking use of the Snapchat miles-per-hour filter in the moments leading up to the crash with the kind of grievous harm we know this product is capable of,” said lead attorney Michael L. Neff. “It’s our hope that this case will not only garner justice for Mr. Wentworth, but will pressure Snapchat to stop putting the public at risk.”
The lawsuit also adds that almost a third of the injuries caused by car crashes in the U.S. in 2014 were due to distracted drivers. Additionally, it cites an AT&T study from last year that claimed that four in ten smartphone users interact with social media while driving.