The family of a North Carolina man who died after his car fell off a collapsed bridge while following Google Maps directions has filed a lawsuit against the tech giant.
According to the lawsuit filed by the family of Philip Paxson, the 47-year-old father of two died on his way home from his oldest daughter's birthday party on September 30, 2022. His Jeep crashed into the car of into a stream at Snow Creek and drowned.
Paxton didn't know the roads in the area he was driving on that rainy night, so he trusted the Google Maps app to find his way. Google Maps led him to a bridge that had been crumbling for about a decade and had never been repaired, the New York Post reports.
"Our daughters asked me how and why their father was killed, but I had nothing to tell them. "Even I, as an adult, cannot understand how the people responsible for the GPS instructions could have acted with such disregard for human life," said the 47-year-old's widow, Alicia Paxon.
As the American newspaper reports, near the bridge that collapsed in 2013 during a flood, there was no warning sign or any kind of fence. Paxon's car fell from a height of 6 meters into the water. Police officers later discovered his body inside the overturned and partially submerged vehicle.
Over the years, many people had notified Google Maps to update the route, but it never did, the lawsuit said. Evidence presented by the family's attorneys included an email sent to the company by another Hickory resident in September 2020 warning Google that it was sending drivers to the damaged bridge. Although the company reportedly responded, saying it was investigating, Google Maps took no action, according to the victim's family.