Parents sue Apple, alleging Amber Alert on AirPods caused son's permanent hearing loss

·2 min read

A Texas couple is suing Apple, alleging their 12-year-old son suffered "permanent hearing loss" after an Amber Alert produced an "ear shattering sound" while he was wearing AirPods.

Carlos Gordoa and Ariani Reyes of San Antonio filed the lawsuit against the tech company on Monday. The suit says the couple's son, identified as B.G. and who is now 14, was watching Netflix on his phone in May 2020 with his AirPods on at a "low volume" when a Amber Alert went off.

The sound of the alert, sent without warning, tore the boy's ear drum, damaged his cochlea, located in the inner ear, and caused "significant injuries" to his hearing, the suit says.

"As a result of the damage to his right ear, B.G. has suffered from bouts of dizziness, vertigo and nausea," the suit says. "At 12 years old, B.G. suffered sudden and permanent hearing loss in his right ear, other significant and temporary or permanent injuries, pain, suffering and the loss of the pleasures of life."

The parents said their son will have to wear a hearing aid for the rest of his life and will need consistent clinical attention.

BIG MAC: His mom wasn't looking. He ordered 31 cheeseburgers on her phone.

The suit, which seeks at least $75,000 in damages, says the AirPods, which were purchased in November 2019, were defective in their design and manufacturing, and there are no warnings or instructions on how to change the volume of certain sounds. Included in the lawsuit are online complaints regarding the volume on AirPods, alleging Apple knew about them.

"When the AirPods are inserted into the ear according to stated fitting instructions, an unreasonably dangerous environment is created in the ear unbeknownst to the user," the suit says. "Sudden increases in sound volumes associated with notifications or alerts are not properly equalized, limited, controlled, incremented, or reduced, thereby posing and unreasonable or serious risk to the wearer’s hearing and health."

USA TODAY has reached out to Apple for comment.

Follow Jordan Mendoza on Twitter: @jordan_mendoza5.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Parents sue Apple, allege alert on AirPods caused son's hearing loss