Posted For: Willie Wonka
A new feature on the iPhone 14 has been alerting police to potential car crashes — but some of the users are just enjoying a roller coaster ride.
Police in Ohio were called to the Kings Island amusement park six times last month when the new safety feature automatically alerted authorities mistaking the quick and jerky movements of the thrill ride for a car accident.
The iPhone 14’s new crash detection feature senses high-G-force acceleration to intentionally detect when the user has been in a car crash.
It is made to be on alert for signs of a crash including rapid deceleration or a sudden stop.
If those warning signs are detected, the phone will display an alert for 10 seconds before starting a 10-second countdown and alarm sound. The iPhone will then automatically dial 911 and share the location of the device if the user does not shut off the alarm during the 10-second warning.
An alert will also be automatically sent out to anyone listed as an emergency contact.
The feature has set off false alarms at Kings Island and Six Flags Great America near Chicago.
Sara White, a 39-year-old dentist, unknowingly set off a false emergency call to Kings Island when she strapped into the Mystic Timbers ride, the Wall Street Journal reported.
She had just bought her new phone two days before and was not aware that the crash detection feature was alerting police to her sudden acceleration and braking as she was enjoying the thrill ride.
Her phone notified authorities: “The owner of this iPhone was in a severe crash and is not responding to their phone.”
The warning message was sent out seven times during the two-minute amusement ride and White’s phone was flooded with missed calls from the emergency dispatch trying to check-in.
Police were then sent to the amusement park to inspect the situation but did not find a crash or locate White when they arrived.
“We are very vigilant about calls,” said Melissa Bour, the director of emergency services for Warren County. “No call doesn’t get checked.”
“You get used to calls that are not an emergency, but it’s wear and tear on the dispatchers.”
While the unsuspected kinks of the latest iPhone feature have caused unnecessary panic, it has come in handy to some.
The safety feature recently alerted emergency responders to a car crash in Nebraska that killed six young people.