The proliferation of smartphones has led to a surge in the number of distracted driving accidents in Kentucky and around the country, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has asked electronics manufacturers for their help in tackling the problem. The agency wants companies to add safeguards to their phones that would make it more difficult for drivers to use texting features while behind the wheel, but a California lawsuit filed by accident victims suggests that this kind of technology already exists.

The plaintiffs have filed a class action lawsuit against Apple over a texting lockout feature that the technology firm developed in 2008. The feature earned Apple a patent in 2014, but it has never been made available to the public. The plaintiffs have called on the company to release the safety feature without further delay and include it in all future versions of the iPhone.