US parents suing Apple say their son suffered 'permanent hearing loss' from Amber Alert in Airpods

Business Insider US
A pair of white Airpods. iStock / Getty Images Plus
A pair of white Airpods. iStock / Getty Images Plus
  • A couple suing Apple for over $75,000 (around R1.2 million) in damages say their son's Airpods injured him.
  • The parents said their 12-year-old son was using his Airpods when an Amber Alert blared loudly.
  • The lawsuit says that the incident damaged the boy's right eardrum and that he'd need a hearing aid.
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A couple in Texas in the US are suing Apple over a claim that their son suffered "permanent hearing loss" while using his Airpods.

Carlos Gordoa and Ariani Reyes of San Antonio, Texas, are demanding over $75,000 (around R1.2 million) in damages, alleging that their 12-year-old son suffered hearing loss when an Amber Alert went off while he was using his Airpods.

They said the incident happened in May 2020 when their son, identified as B.G. in the lawsuit, was watching Netflix with his Airpods that had been purchased new six months earlier.

"B.G. was watching Netflix on his iPhone connected to the AirPods at a low volume when an Amber Alert went off suddenly, and without warning, at a volume that tore apart B.G.'s ear drum, damaged his cochlea, and caused significant injuries to B.G.'s hearing," the lawsuit said.

The lawsuit said the child had experienced "bouts of dizziness, vertigo, and nausea" since the incident as well as mental anguish and emotional trauma. It said he would have to use a hearing aid for the rest of his life.

"At 12-years-old, B.G. suffered sudden and permanent hearing loss in his right ear," the suit said. "B.G. has lost his ability to live a normal life, and he will continue to live a diminished life into the future, including a diminished earning capacity."

The lawsuit also said the family would for the foreseeable future have medical bills that the suit said were "a result of the defective AirPods." The suit argues the devices are defective in design or lack adequate warnings for the risks of use.

"Had Apple designed the AirPods to self-adjust to safe levels or provided warnings about the volume increases associated with alerts, this boy would be living a normal life," said the attorney Tej Paranjpe, one of the lawyers representing the family, in a press release.

Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Insider.

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