A disgruntled iPod owner has filed a lawsuit against Apple, claiming the device causes hearing loss and that the company does not properly warn users of this danger.

iPods are “inherently defective in design and are not sufficiently adorned with adequate warnings regarding the likelihood of hearing loss”, according to the complaint, which was filed yesterday on behalf of John Kiel Patterson in US District Court in San Jose, California.

The owner, according to iPod website

ilounge.com

, seeks class action status, demands compensation for unspecified plaintiffs' damages and upgrades to make iPods safer to use.

According to the complaint, iPods can produce sounds of more than 115 decibels, which can damage the hearing of a person exposed for more than 28 seconds per day.

Apple ships a warning with each iPod that states “permanent hearing loss may occur if earphones or headphones are used at high volume”.