Drunk-driver's iPhone 14 Crash Detection feature gets him arrested after smashing into a tree

Apple iPhone 14 Pro
(Image credit: iMore)

Apple's iPhone 14 Crash Detection feature was to thank for a drink-driver being arrested, according to a report.

The New Zealand man crashed his car into a tree in a central reservation with his iPhone immediately calling emergency services — just as Apple advertises. But alarm bells were raised when the driver told the emergency operator that the police “should not worry about it.”

The person on the line didn't believe them and police were sent to the scene to find the man intoxicated and aggressive.

iPhone to the rescue

Stuff reports that the man didn't take too kindly to being arrested, adding that he "allegedly pushed at police as they began drink-driving procedures, and refused a blood sample being taken."

The man now has a court appearance to look forward to after being charged "with refusing a blood sample and assaulting police."

Senior Sergeant Anthony Bond believes that this is the first time that a drink-driver has been arrested thanks to the iPhone's Crash Detection feature.

The news, while not necessarily what the feature was designed for, comes at a good time for Apple. Emergency services around the world have already suggested that Crash Detection is causing them headaches, saying that it creates too much work due to false callouts.

The Crash Detection feature is available on the Apple Watch Series 8, Apple Watch Ultra, Apple Watch SE (2nd generation), and newer. But it's also available on Apple's best iPhones — the iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus, iPhone 14 Pro, and iPhone 14 Pro Max.

The feature is designed to detect a major crash and then automatically call emergency services after 20 seconds unless it is told not to by the user. In this case, the man would likely have fled the scene if it wasn't for that call.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.