In 2016 Snapchat is expected to break 200 million users. Many active users from the ages of 13 to 34 use this app in place of text messaging or phone calls. Snapchat is a photo messaging application that allows users to take photos, record videos, add text and drawings, and send them to a controlled list of recipients within a specific amount of time. Marketing experts have stated that Snapchat could end up bigger and more popular than Facebook!
As if Snapchat were addictive and dangerous enough, they added a filter that calculates the speed the user is moving. The original intention was to calculate the speed of a person riding a bike, running, or walking in a video snap; they even warn users: “Please, DO NOT Snap and drive.” Unfortunately, many Snapchat users ignore the warning.
The addictiveness of this app has caused users to snap and drive as there are many reported cases of users ending up in car accidents while using the app. Teenager Christal McGee was snapchatting and driving at 80+ mph using the Snapchat filter to calculate her speed in a 55mph zone. At 107mph she rear ended another car causing a serious brain injury to the driver. The victim is now suing Snapchat for being the cause of the accident. See the video above for information.
As licensed drivers, we have an obligation to adhere to a standard of reasonable care while performing acts that could foreseeably harm others. The teen, as shown in the video, performed a negligent act in her decision to distract herself as well as driving far beyond the speed limit. As technology has become part of our every day lives, we have to refrain from these distracting practices while we are driving to help prevent these accidents.
Do you think Snapchat is to blame?