A woman is suing Google for providing unsafe walking directions while she was in Utah. Lauren Rosenberg of Northridge, California, filed the lawsuit against Google on Thursday asking for over $100,000 in the U.S. District Court in Utah. The driver of the car that hit her was also named in the suit.
Rosenberg used her phone to get walking directions to her destination. The directions led her to a four-lane road that did not have any sidewalks. She said the road was "not reasonably safe for pedestrians." Though she didn't feel the road was safe she believed she could reach a sidewalk if she continued forward. She attempted to cross the road and was hit by a car.
The accident caused multiple bone fractures that required six weeks of rehabilitation. She is seeking compensation for her medical bills, lost wages and punitive damages. Her lawyer, Allen Young said, "We think there's enough fault to go around, but Google had some responsibility to direct people correctly or warn them. They created a trap with walking instructions that people rely on. She relied on it and thought she should cross the street."
Google spokeswoman Elaine Filadelfo told NPR that they have not received a copy of the lawsuit so they couldn't discuss it. But she did dispute the assertion that Rosenberg did not receive a warning that the walking directions may be missing sidewalks or pedestrian paths. She said that every software version for desktop computers and mobile devices has had that disclaimer since Google Maps was launched in 2008.
Utah Park City police said that some segments of the road Rosenberg was on have sidewalks but not the stretch that she reached. The road has a walking path on the side that she attempted to reach before being hit by a car. Her lawyer said that the walking path was "totally snowpacked" and useless to pedestrians in January.