Apple Inc. (AAPL) Faces Challenge as Apple Watch Declared A Highway Safety Hazard

Apple (AAPL)

Apple (UK) Limited, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) United Kingdom arm, is facing serious challenges after British authorities warned that the new watch, released about a week ago, is a highway threat. The authorities said that any motorist who causes an accident and is found wearing the Apple iWatch could face stern penalties.

Information has it that British regulators are taking immediate measures to curb any possible accidents that might stem from the use of the wearable by a motorist while driving. Those thinking of using the watch while driving should think again, as they might be forced to part with roughly $163 and 3 points on their driving record. The punishments could be even heavier in a case where the driver causes a deadly crash.

“Enforcement will be difficult for the police,” acknowledged IAM’s Greig, “but powers exist to seize and interrogate devices in the event of a serious crash. The very device that distracted you also has the power to convict you.”

Apple (AAPL)

The announcement comes amid growing concern in different countries over the high level of distraction caused by mobile phones and other devices. Safety professionals have seriously questioned the addition of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) watch to the market, arguing that it could just be another addition to the list of many gadgets that distract drivers.

According to the UK’s Institute for Advanced Motorists, the watch, whose sale in the U.K. is being undertaken by Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), has the potential of considerably impairing a driver’s focus. The organization was quick to point out an earlier study that revealed that nearly 2,000 road accidents in Britain were caused by motorists who were distracted by mobile phones.

“Having a wristwatch linked to users’ mobile phone only suggests a higher proportion of drivers’ performance will be significantly impaired,”

the organization said in a statement.

In the U.S., several regulators have voiced their concerns about distracted driving, which is said to cause one accident in every eleven on North American roads. However, such regulators haven’t made comments specifically about Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) iWatch.

Apple (UK) Limited too hasn’t issued any statement on the unfolding events.

This article has been written by Victor Ochieng.

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One Comment;

  1. CJF said:

    Interesting that the Apple Watch would spark this reaction. Aside from the fact that smart watches have been available for years and this hasn’t come up, there are far more distractions in cars today than what people might put on their wrist. All of the navigation systems, in car automation screen, and lately the technology that takes email or messages from your smartphone and displays or reads it to you while driving. All of these technical marvels have equal potential to distract a driver – they don’t have to be tethered to someone’s wrist to be a potential distraction.

    It’s time our officials stop reacting in knee-jerk fashion to technology built-in or brought into cars, and start thinking clearly about how people might use them and how companies can create safer environments. I’ve often thought that if my smartphone is “smart” enough to connect to my car’s bluetooth system, it must be smart enough to know it’s my car’s bluetooth system. If so, a phone maker could have a setting that when connected to a car’s bluetooth system, it turns off incoming texts, stores them for later, and sends an auto-reply that a user sets such as “driving at the moment, will reply when I arrive safely at my destination. Be patient”. Now how hard could that be?

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