Parents sue Apple claiming Amber Alert sound caused permanent hearing loss for son

A Texas family is suing Apple after they said their child’s hearing was permanently damaged after an Amber Alert was sent out while he was wearing AirPods.

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The lawsuit was filed this week in federal court in San Jose, California.

Carlos Gordoa and Ariani Reyes say their son, only identified by the initials B.G. in the lawsuit, was wearing an AirPod wireless earbud in his right ear in May 2020. He was watching Netflix on his iPhone when an Amber Alert was sent out warning users about a missing or abducted child, Reuters reported.

His parents said the AirPods were set on “low volume” before the alert was sent, NBC News reported.

The family said the tone sent with the alert was at an “ear-shattering” volume that ruptured the boy’s eardrum and damaged his inner ear. He now has permanent hearing loss, tinnitus and dizziness, and must wear a hearing aid because of the incident.

They said that the alert overrides the volume level users set and accused Apple of gross negligence and fraud. They also claim that Apple had known of the issue since 2019, when users told the company that AirPods did not adjust the alert volume to match the level they were using to play media, Reuters reported.

KTVU reported that Apple did not design AirPods to self-adjust to safe levels or give warnings about the volume increase associated with the alerts.

Apple did not respond to requests from NBC News for comment on the case.