Apple iPod blamed for Aussie’s death in bike-truck accident

“An iPod has been blamed for the death of an Australian woman in London,” The Age reports. “The Evening Standard newspaper quoted Ms McMillan’s best friend, Jacques Poullard, as saying she may still have been alive if she hadn’t been listening to the iPod while riding her bike. She was obsessed by that thing.'”

The Age reports, “I never said anything to her about wearing the iPod but now I think if she hadn’t had it on she might have heard the (truck). ‘I hope people will think twice about cycling while wearing headphones.'”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Personal responsibility. Common sense. Remember those concepts? They still work today. Who decided to listen to something (possibly too loudly) while biking on the road? Obviously not the iPod. Still, this tragedy presents an opportunity for a reminder: Make sure you can hear what’s going on around you if you’re listening to your iPod while doing something that might require hearing to help prevent injury.

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76 Comments

  1. just to be sure i’ve got this…

    if i had been hit by a car while rollerblading and listening to my Walkman then Sony would be to blame for making said Walkman capable of playing too loudly?

    i’m just trying to clarify the extent of the responsiblity of Apple Computer and the responsiblity of the end user.

  2. unfortunate dilemma. a lot of the things that make ipods so damn important: jogging, cycling, living through your girlfriends diatribes… can be dangerous with the little life saver. or life ender in this case.

    i guess it’s one more reason to just pay the gym membership fees. mortality rates on stationary bikes are pretty low. same with treadmills. although the gym won’t fix you’re girlfriend problems (unless you find a new one while you’re there).

    PS I wouldn’t bike around London streets at an aerobic pace even with unimpeded hearing, not that doing so means this woman deserved to be hit by a truck, but that is a bit stupid. I wonder where it happened. I would stick to parks and pedestrian walkways for outdoor cyclling, but maybe that’s not allowed. I don’t know.

  3. before we get any more negative comments about blaming apple, did you guys notice that NO ONE HERE BLAMED APPLE! bloody hell. So quick to talk about how everyone else is a law suit happy idiot you get on this poor dead woman’s case for something she didn’t even do. Her friend’s warning to other cyclists even said heaphones instead of iPods, being fair because this issue is caused by any portable music player. Kudos to her friends and whatever family she may have for not being irrational law suit happy douche bags. and shame on you for jumping down their throat anyway.

  4. good point, jay… but just wait. there’ll be plenty of local news reporters and editors who, looking for fill for the 5:30 news, will latch onto this and will spare no expense at pointing out that the device in question was an APPLE iPOD that she was listening to and not point out that the problem was the misuse of a portable music device and not a particular product.

    there’s already been such pointless lawsuits.

  5. I see cyclists doing this all the time. For those that haven’t been to London, it isn’t a nice New World city with wide streets and a grid pattern. Traffic comes at you from all over the place, and you can’t see in all directions at once. To impede your hearing is asking for trouble.

    I feel sorry for this girl, but sooner or later someone was going to die here thanks to their iPod addiction. Hopefully other cyclists will now pay heed.

  6. In Arizona, a heavy cycling state, it is illegal to ride or drive any vehicle with headphones on. You can be ticketed as it impairs your driving/cycling ability.

    It is sad that a fellow cyclist yielded to the siren song of an audio device while cycling and paid the ultimate price.

    Peace be to her soul.

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