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You Can't Blame The Air Force Space Command (AFSPC)


TexasGringo
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The U.S. Air Force wants to set the record straight: Neither aging GPS satellites nor a weak GPS signal were responsible for an elderly couple getting stranded in the woods for several days after following directions in their GPS-enabled SUV.

 

http://news.yahoo.com/s/space/20091230/sc_...gpsairforcesays

I don't care what they say, I'm blaming every single DNF from now on aging satellites ;)

 

On a side note, blaming something high above for your misfortunes is a long cherished tradition.

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The U.S. Air Force wants to set the record straight: Neither aging GPS satellites nor a weak GPS signal were responsible for an elderly couple getting stranded in the woods for several days after following directions in their GPS-enabled SUV.

 

http://news.yahoo.com/s/space/20091230/sc_...gpsairforcesays

This is not the first time someone has taken a poor road in winter in Oregon. People using a GPSr for navigation should use common sense. The system does not discriminate back roads from highways and if the road doesn't look good, don't take it. I think for myself while on the road and I am not a slave to the nav system I'm using. This needs to be especially the case in winter when some roads do become impassible.

Edited by WeightMan
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The U.S. Air Force wants to set the record straight: Neither aging GPS satellites nor a weak GPS signal were responsible for an elderly couple getting stranded in the woods for several days after following directions in their GPS-enabled SUV.

 

http://news.yahoo.com/s/space/20091230/sc_...gpsairforcesays

This is not the first time someone has taken a poor road in winter in Oregon. People using a GPSr for navigation should use common sense. The system does not discriminate back roads from highways and if the road doesn't look good, don't take it. I think for myself while on the road and I am not a slave to the nav system I'm using. This needs to be especially the case in winter when some roads do become impassible.

 

Those units most certainly do discriminate back roads from highways. However, they do not give people common sense.

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I like how the AFSPC spokesperson tried to shove the blame towards the GPSr manufacturers.

 

Tones declined to speculate about why the Rhoads were stranded, but expressed confidence that it wasn't due to the satellites. "All I can say is that the signals that are coming down are very strong and healthy," she said, "so I would have to defer those kinds of questions to [manufacturers] such as Garmin and others that are providing the GPS devices."

 

I'm sure Garmin etc. love it when they do that.

 

(I don't think it was anybody's fault other than the driver.)

Edited by Castle Mischief
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Both are examples why the gene pool needs chlorination. Come on folks, driving down an unplowed NFS road in the middle of winter just because your GPS routed you that way? Jeez. Maybe fastest would be a better choice than shortest.

 

Jim

 

I planted a geocache about a mile off that NF2516 road on June 4, 2006. On the way out I tried to go home the short way. Several miles north on this road I turned around rather than get stuck in the snow. That day I took the long way home but I got home that day.

Also I found a 5/5 geocache along the south side of the Rogue River less than a month before James Kim died down there. My compass and my light saved me that day. I was getting 1 and sometimes 2 satellites in that canyon.

I don't know where these people started out from, but they should have stayed on Hwy OR31 all the way to US395 north of Lakeview.

If you want to blame any Federal agency, try USFS Fremont NF for not having "road closed 'till spring" signs.

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It just goes to show you that you need to make sure you have your GPS set correctly for your activity.

 

I read the other day that they had their GPS set for "shortest route" and not set for fastest route. I suspect they also might have had it set for traveling on foot and not on traveling by car.

 

It was clearly an operator error.

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Someone needs to point out that the satellites only provide the information needed to determine position. The GPS units have to rely on the maps provided to determine what road you are on.

 

Oh, wait, the AF pointed that out, didn't they........?

 

And, finally, both of these systems only provide input to the human brain. What that does with it determines the final outcome.

 

Ah, there's the problem......

 

Question - why pick on Garmin?

 

P.S. We get to use those GPS signals for free (well, except we paid for them in our taxes, didn't we.)

Edited by Cache O'Plenty
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My GPS once gave my drive-by-drive directions to a cache. It told me to turn right and I would be 250 feet from the cache. I turned right, into a parking spot at the bottom of a 250ft foot cliff.

 

Its weird this GPS experience happened right after I cached with a buddy who told me about his GPS sending him down some NFS roads that dead-ended to a trail with still 6miles to go to the cache.

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The U.S. Air Force wants to set the record straight: Neither aging GPS satellites nor a weak GPS signal were responsible for an elderly couple getting stranded in the woods for several days after following directions in their GPS-enabled SUV.

 

http://news.yahoo.com/s/space/20091230/sc_...gpsairforcesays

This is not the first time someone has taken a poor road in winter in Oregon. People using a GPSr for navigation should use common sense. The system does not discriminate back roads from highways and if the road doesn't look good, don't take it. I think for myself while on the road and I am not a slave to the nav system I'm using. This needs to be especially the case in winter when some roads do become impassible.

 

Those units most certainly do discriminate back roads from highways. However, they do not give people common sense.

 

While my Magellan Maestro I have in my truck will differentiate between highways and other roads, but it will only do so if the map software in it is accurate and up to date. It will not say whether it is a gravel or a paved road. NF roads may be either.

 

It is not when it comes to the road I live on. It tries to get me to turn into the fairgrounds and drive through it to get to the closed end my road on the other side

 

One end of it was closed 20 years ago due to right of way issues with the RR. The right of way was removed along with 40 feet of road. That was the end used the most at that time. It still shows on most mapping software to this day. I have had to give numerous people turn by turn instructions to get to my house because neither their gps or online mapping can find the right entrance to my road.

 

It also doesn't say my road is gravel not blacktop and is private.

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The U.S. Air Force wants to set the record straight: Neither aging GPS satellites nor a weak GPS signal were responsible for an elderly couple getting stranded in the woods for several days after following directions in their GPS-enabled SUV.

 

http://news.yahoo.com/s/space/20091230/sc_...gpsairforcesays

I don't care what they say, I'm blaming every single DNF from now on aging satellites :rolleyes:

 

On a side note, blaming something high above for your misfortunes is a long cherished tradition.

 

I'd be hoping they don't arrange a demo to convince you how accurate they are... those GPS guided bombs they use come in small sizes too! Be careful who you blame... The implied alternate, EVEN MORE SO!

 

Doug Happy New Year!

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I too was willing to just write this off as operator error and leave it at that but last night I had a change of opinion.

My wife and I and another couple went to dinner at a resort in Trout Lake Washington, a very small town at the south foot of Mount Adams. A young couple came in obviously rather distraught. we exchanged greeting and the young man mentioned he was from Seattle and had been driving for over 10 hours. Although the weather was bad I knew it should not have been over a 4 or 5 hour drive at most. When I asked him what had happened he explained that he had followed his navigation system taking the shortest route from Seattle to Trout Lake. well that just so happens to take you through the Gifford Pinchot National Forest right up to almost the tree line of Mount Adams. they made it to within about 40 miles of Trout Lake when the road became impassable because of the snow. They managed to get turned around and went back to Seattle and took the long safe rout around the mountain. Now I know that Mt. Adams country and that last 40 miles would have taken them to over the 6000 foot elevation where no roads are maintained and no one goes during the winter. If they would have gone any further or even gotten stuck where they turned around they probably would not have been found until the spring snow melt.

I know that it was a mistake on his part but this is obviously becoming a problem. Most every consumer product has warning labels. We the experienced users and the makers of these GPSr and mapping programs know they can lead people down the wrong road into trouble. On the last night of 2009 we came very close to losing another young couple to this problem. Is a simple warning label and a bit of programming built into the unit that could prevent this from happening too much to ask of the manufacturers?

Edited by brokenoaks
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I too was willing to just write this off as operator error and leave it at that but last night I had a change of opinion.

My wife and I and another couple went to dinner at a resort in Trout Lake Washington, a very small town at the south foot of Mount Adams. A young couple came in obviously rather distraught. we exchanged greeting and the young man mentioned he was from Seattle and had been driving for over 10 hours. Although the weather was bad I knew it should not have been over a 4 or 5 hour drive at most. When I asked him what had happened he explained that he had followed his navigation system taking the shortest route from Seattle to Trout Lake. well that just so happens to take you through the Gifford Pinchot National Forest right up to almost the tree line of Mount Adams. they made it to within about 40 miles of Trout Lake when the road became impassable because of the snow. They managed to get turned around and went back to Seattle and took the long safe rout around the mountain. Now I know that Mt. Adams country and that last 40 miles would have taken them to over the 6000 foot elevation where no roads are maintained and no one goes during the winter. If they would have gone any further or even gotten stuck where they turned around they probably would not have been found until the spring snow melt.

I know that it was a mistake on his part but this is obviously becoming a problem. Most every consumer product has warning labels. We the experienced users and the makers of these GPSr and mapping programs know they can lead people down the wrong road into trouble. On the last night of 2009 we came very close to losing another young couple to this problem. Is a simple warning label and a bit of programming built into the unit that could prevent this from happening too much to ask of the manufacturers?

How would that story have changed if they were reading paper maps?

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I too was willing to just write this off as operator error and leave it at that but last night I had a change of opinion.

My wife and I and another couple went to dinner at a resort in Trout Lake Washington, a very small town at the south foot of Mount Adams. A young couple came in obviously rather distraught. we exchanged greeting and the young man mentioned he was from Seattle and had been driving for over 10 hours. Although the weather was bad I knew it should not have been over a 4 or 5 hour drive at most. When I asked him what had happened he explained that he had followed his navigation system taking the shortest route from Seattle to Trout Lake. well that just so happens to take you through the Gifford Pinchot National Forest right up to almost the tree line of Mount Adams. they made it to within about 40 miles of Trout Lake when the road became impassable because of the snow. They managed to get turned around and went back to Seattle and took the long safe rout around the mountain. Now I know that Mt. Adams country and that last 40 miles would have taken them to over the 6000 foot elevation where no roads are maintained and no one goes during the winter. If they would have gone any further or even gotten stuck where they turned around they probably would not have been found until the spring snow melt.

I know that it was a mistake on his part but this is obviously becoming a problem. Most every consumer product has warning labels. We the experienced users and the makers of these GPSr and mapping programs know they can lead people down the wrong road into trouble. On the last night of 2009 we came very close to losing another young couple to this problem. Is a simple warning label and a bit of programming built into the unit that could prevent this from happening too much to ask of the manufacturers?

How would that story have changed if they were reading paper maps?

 

This was my thought. A proper solution would be for the state or the feds to post signs in such areas.

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Was there some point that these drivers got to a stretch of road that was obviously not plowed (before they got stuck), that the should had thought to themselves, "Gee, looks like this is not the best way to go?" Where they figuring that gee, they had an SUV so what's a little snow? (As my father used to say, all you get with a 4x4 is stuck further in).

 

You can put all sorts of warning labels on products, but people will continue to ignore them.

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I too was willing to just write this off as operator error and leave it at that but last night I had a change of opinion.

My wife and I and another couple went to dinner at a resort in Trout Lake Washington, a very small town at the south foot of Mount Adams. A young couple came in obviously rather distraught. we exchanged greeting and the young man mentioned he was from Seattle and had been driving for over 10 hours. Although the weather was bad I knew it should not have been over a 4 or 5 hour drive at most. When I asked him what had happened he explained that he had followed his navigation system taking the shortest route from Seattle to Trout Lake. well that just so happens to take you through the Gifford Pinchot National Forest right up to almost the tree line of Mount Adams. they made it to within about 40 miles of Trout Lake when the road became impassable because of the snow. They managed to get turned around and went back to Seattle and took the long safe rout around the mountain. Now I know that Mt. Adams country and that last 40 miles would have taken them to over the 6000 foot elevation where no roads are maintained and no one goes during the winter. If they would have gone any further or even gotten stuck where they turned around they probably would not have been found until the spring snow melt.

I know that it was a mistake on his part but this is obviously becoming a problem. Most every consumer product has warning labels. We the experienced users and the makers of these GPSr and mapping programs know they can lead people down the wrong road into trouble. On the last night of 2009 we came very close to losing another young couple to this problem. Is a simple warning label and a bit of programming built into the unit that could prevent this from happening too much to ask of the manufacturers?

How would that story have changed if they were reading paper maps?

 

This was my thought. A proper solution would be for the state or the feds to post signs in such areas.

Yes, lets spend MORE tax money protecting people from themselves.

If one can't tell the difference between a primary road and a secondary road, then maybe it's time to thin the herd a little.

 

Whether paper maps or listening to the hot sounding British chick voice on your autorouting GPS, the end result is that the driver is on control. If the driver doesn't check the route before heading off down logging roads then the driver is the problem, not signs (not) posted by the government.

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We don't need more signs or warning labels, we need more common sense. It doesn't matter who is telling you to go - a GPS, a navigation unit, a map, or your spouse in the passenger seat - DON'T TRY TO GO OVER A MOUNTAIN IN THE WINTER UNLESS YOU ARE PREPARED FOR THE TRIP!

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well I never said anything about paper maps. one of my points is that these manufactures of navigation devices advertise that they will easily navigate you to wherever you want to go with no problem. that's simply not the truth and perhaps they should do the responsible thing. Don_j wants to lay it off on the forest service to be responsible for the stupid things people do? there are 1,368,300 acres in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. does anyone really think the FS can control all the accesses to it?

Yes people have to do the responsible thing, corporations are made up of people, they should do the right thing too.

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The U.S. Air Force wants to set the record straight: Neither aging GPS satellites nor a weak GPS signal were responsible for an elderly couple getting stranded in the woods for several days after following directions in their GPS-enabled SUV.

 

http://news.yahoo.com/s/space/20091230/sc_...gpsairforcesays

 

The media was only half right. It probably was due to aging, but not the satellites.. :rolleyes:

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Operator error...100%. A lack of common sense can get you killed, and thinning the herd is really what needs to happen. How dumb do you have to be to try crossing a mountain on unmaintained forest roads in the winter? Those roads are probably not maintained for 6 months of the year.

 

Too many people have unrealistic expectations of their GPS hardware. Problem is, it's so pervasive anymore that the companies who make GPS-enabled hardware couldn't possibly put enough warnings on it to make people get a clue.

 

IMO, there should be a "stupid fee". If you do something stupid and have to be rescued from the mess you created, you need to be charged/fined for it. Doesn't matter if it's SAR or service-based businesses. If I screw something up maintaining my car or bicycle, the repair shop should charge me extra for bailing me out. Make stupidity hurt and people might start to make better decisions.

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Operator error...100%. A lack of common sense can get you killed, and thinning the herd is really what needs to happen. How dumb do you have to be to try crossing a mountain on unmaintained forest roads in the winter? Those roads are probably not maintained for 6 months of the year.

 

Too many people have unrealistic expectations of their GPS hardware. Problem is, it's so pervasive anymore that the companies who make GPS-enabled hardware couldn't possibly put enough warnings on it to make people get a clue.

 

IMO, there should be a "stupid fee". If you do something stupid and have to be rescued from the mess you created, you need to be charged/fined for it. Doesn't matter if it's SAR or service-based businesses. If I screw something up maintaining my car or bicycle, the repair shop should charge me extra for bailing me out. Make stupidity hurt and people might start to make better decisions.

 

Stop speaking right now. You are making WAY too much sense!!

 

Some people actually believe that GPS maps are "real time" driving conditions. Yes, there should be a stupid tax but then some idiot will come along with "Stupid Insurance"....

 

Wait....I just had an idea on how I could make millions...

 

Nevermind the above. I didn't say anything.

 

I'll be right back....need to make phone calls!!

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The U.S. Air Force wants to set the record straight: Neither aging GPS satellites nor a weak GPS signal were responsible for an elderly couple getting stranded in the woods for several days after following directions in their GPS-enabled SUV.

 

http://news.yahoo.com/s/space/20091230/sc_...gpsairforcesays

This is not the first time someone has taken a poor road in winter in Oregon. People using a GPSr for navigation should use common sense. The system does not discriminate back roads from highways and if the road doesn't look good, don't take it. I think for myself while on the road and I am not a slave to the nav system I'm using. This needs to be especially the case in winter when some roads do become impassible.

 

Those units most certainly do discriminate back roads from highways. However, they do not give people common sense.

 

While my Magellan Maestro I have in my truck will differentiate between highways and other roads, but it will only do so if the map software in it is accurate and up to date. It will not say whether it is a gravel or a paved road. NF roads may be either.

 

It is not when it comes to the road I live on. It tries to get me to turn into the fairgrounds and drive through it to get to the closed end my road on the other side

 

One end of it was closed 20 years ago due to right of way issues with the RR. The right of way was removed along with 40 feet of road. That was the end used the most at that time. It still shows on most mapping software to this day. I have had to give numerous people turn by turn instructions to get to my house because neither their gps or online mapping can find the right entrance to my road.

 

It also doesn't say my road is gravel not blacktop and is private.

 

Perhaps you ought to consider dumping it for a used Maestro 3225 like the one that I have had for about two years now. That unit has been able to route with the knowledge of which roads are freeways and which are not since day one out of the box.. The thing works like a champ.

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Operator error...100%. A lack of common sense can get you killed, and thinning the herd is really what needs to happen. How dumb do you have to be to try crossing a mountain on unmaintained forest roads in the winter? Those roads are probably not maintained for 6 months of the year.

 

Too many people have unrealistic expectations of their GPS hardware. Problem is, it's so pervasive anymore that the companies who make GPS-enabled hardware couldn't possibly put enough warnings on it to make people get a clue.

 

IMO, there should be a "stupid fee". If you do something stupid and have to be rescued from the mess you created, you need to be charged/fined for it. Doesn't matter if it's SAR or service-based businesses. If I screw something up maintaining my car or bicycle, the repair shop should charge me extra for bailing me out. Make stupidity hurt and people might start to make better decisions.

Just what do you think "thinning the herd" implies?

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well I never said anything about paper maps. one of my points is that these manufactures of navigation devices advertise that they will easily navigate you to wherever you want to go with no problem. that's simply not the truth and perhaps they should do the responsible thing. Don_j wants to lay it off on the forest service to be responsible for the stupid things people do? there are 1,368,300 acres in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. does anyone really think the FS can control all the accesses to it?

Yes people have to do the responsible thing, corporations are made up of people, they should do the right thing too.

 

The bold part above is the key. Where do YOU want to go? It is your decision to go there. The road those people got stuck on may or may not be passable. If I am in a Jeep with a 10" lift, good tires, a winch and with 4 other vehicles, that road could be just plain fun. I wouldn't even think about trying it at this time of year in a Corvette. People need to be responsible for their own decisions, and not try to blame others when they make the wrong choice.

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Operator error...100%. A lack of common sense can get you killed, and thinning the herd is really what needs to happen. How dumb do you have to be to try crossing a mountain on unmaintained forest roads in the winter? Those roads are probably not maintained for 6 months of the year.

 

Too many people have unrealistic expectations of their GPS hardware. Problem is, it's so pervasive anymore that the companies who make GPS-enabled hardware couldn't possibly put enough warnings on it to make people get a clue.

 

IMO, there should be a "stupid fee". If you do something stupid and have to be rescued from the mess you created, you need to be charged/fined for it. Doesn't matter if it's SAR or service-based businesses. If I screw something up maintaining my car or bicycle, the repair shop should charge me extra for bailing me out. Make stupidity hurt and people might start to make better decisions.

Just what do you think "thinning the herd" implies?

 

For me (I was not the first to use it in this thread, BTW), it means that stupidity is so pervasive because of all the laws out there that protect us from our own stupidity and poor judgement. It means that there's such a huge safety net in place in so many places that decisions that would have got you dead just 50yrs ago don't even seem to embarrass a lot of people.

 

All I want are consequences. SAR is not likely to leave people to die because they made a bad decision. But those people can still experience consequences that matter. A nice bill from the SAR group or the state would be nice (especially if laws made it like student loan debt you can't erase with bankruptcy). "That which does not kills us only makes us stronger", right?

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Operator error...100%. A lack of common sense can get you killed, and thinning the herd is really what needs to happen. How dumb do you have to be to try crossing a mountain on unmaintained forest roads in the winter? Those roads are probably not maintained for 6 months of the year.

 

Too many people have unrealistic expectations of their GPS hardware. Problem is, it's so pervasive anymore that the companies who make GPS-enabled hardware couldn't possibly put enough warnings on it to make people get a clue.

 

IMO, there should be a "stupid fee". If you do something stupid and have to be rescued from the mess you created, you need to be charged/fined for it. Doesn't matter if it's SAR or service-based businesses. If I screw something up maintaining my car or bicycle, the repair shop should charge me extra for bailing me out. Make stupidity hurt and people might start to make better decisions.

Just what do you think "thinning the herd" implies?

 

For me (I was not the first to use it in this thread, BTW), it means that stupidity is so pervasive because of all the laws out there that protect us from our own stupidity and poor judgement. It means that there's such a huge safety net in place in so many places that decisions that would have got you dead just 50yrs ago don't even seem to embarrass a lot of people.

 

All I want are consequences. SAR is not likely to leave people to die because they made a bad decision. But those people can still experience consequences that matter. A nice bill from the SAR group or the state would be nice (especially if laws made it like student loan debt you can't erase with bankruptcy). "That which does not kills us only makes us stronger", right?

 

Yeah, tell me about it:

 

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100103/ap_on_bi_ge/us_bernanke

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How would that story have changed if they were reading paper maps?

 

I only see that IF they were using the maps, they probably would have been making conscious choices about the route taken... not simpy following orders. That route has almost always ended badly.

 

There is of course the very real possibility that they would have done the exact same thing anyway, but might have exercised discretion at an earlier point when the weather / road conditions degraded. Over in that puzzle thread the comment was made that people have a real problem with backing away from a course of action and starting over with fresh thoughts... That can be a hard lesson to learn in many forms.

 

One thing that doesn't get mentioned here, but did in the news blurbs... the way the relative thought to use an identical GPS unit to attempt to duplicate the routing they might have received... I've already added that to my procedures book... It is basically a fundamental to attempt to look for someone along the route they might provide in a trip plan. The NEW twist is to get them to say what they are using to determine that..

we ask for communication and navigation equipment be mentioned, avalanche beacons and such, even down to make, model and frequencies as appropriate... but to use and identical unit could be paramount in this type of situation, given the varied map sources and ways of interpreting them by the GPSrs.

 

I still feel that the really important item is a GOOD TRIP PLAN, left with a reliable 3rd party! That and the willingness to stick to it and to remember to cancel it when done or abandoned. Don't need any pointless searching out there... have enough to do without false alarms.

 

Doug

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IMO, there should be a "stupid fee". If you do something stupid and have to be rescued from the mess you created, you need to be charged/fined for it. Doesn't matter if it's SAR or service-based businesses. If I screw something up maintaining my car or bicycle, the repair shop should charge me extra for bailing me out. Make stupidity hurt and people might start to make better decisions.

 

We have something like that here in Arizona that pertains to trying to cross a flooded road. We unabashedly call it the "Stupid Motorist Law". :)

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well I never said anything about paper maps. one of my points is that these manufactures of navigation devices advertise that they will easily navigate you to wherever you want to go with no problem. that's simply not the truth
Sounds to me like their GPS navigated them correctly to where they wanted to go. They wanted to take the shortest route. It led them there, just as they asked it to. Their mistake was in letting technology think for them, rather than letting technology be a tool for their own thinking.
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things like this make me think back to (and want to join) a story about a guy who removed himself from society (moved up to the farthest reaches of the rocky mountains) because he went shopping one day and picked up a box of toothpicks to see there were directions on the side of the box. thinking behind it is, if there is directions or a warning on something enough people probably caused that warning by lack of use of grey matter and he wanted no part of a society that dumb..

 

i have a gps in my moms van (she's 80) does she follow every turn or direction? Nope, one cause i warned her about it as well as showed her how it can put you in the middle of a cornfield on a bad day, and two cause she was raised (like i was raised by her and my dad) to use Common Sense.

 

though if people had common sense then lawmakers would have nothing much to do.

 

And if that road is so much of a problem in winter then maybe the forest service should post a road closed for the season sign to protect the stupid from them selves. im not saying every forest service road just the problem ones that are notorious for stranding people.

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Is a simple warning label and a bit of programming built into the unit that could prevent this from happening too much to ask of the manufacturers?

 

Every GPSr manual I've seen has included some kind of warning about not blindly following it without regard for current conditions. They also include a description of the difference between "shortest route" and "fastest route."

 

But then, I actually read the manual for products I buy. I'm funny that way.

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I doubt very much if these people would have gotten in the trouble they did if they were using a good old road atlas.

That's because, at some point or another, they would have had to look at the map, and would have seen that they have to leave this big double red line for a big single black line, which then turns into a dashed black line. Many (OK... some) would have the sense to realize that they just may end up driving over a hiking trail before their trip came to an abrupt halt. The GPS, on the other hand, cheerfully says, "turn here :anibad: ", and my Nuvi, at least, will go so far as to happily say "travel off-road" when worse comes to worst.
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I doubt very much if these people would have gotten in the trouble they did if they were using a good old road atlas.

 

GPSr are a great comfort to those that can't navigate but it also puts them in situations that they otherwise wouldn't be in.

 

As do road maps, since you can never be sure you're on the road you think you're on.....or at the location you think you are.....

 

Let's face it, some people just do not have common sense.

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I doubt very much if these people would have gotten in the trouble they did if they were using a good old road atlas.

 

GPSr are a great comfort to those that can't navigate but it also puts them in situations that they otherwise wouldn't be in.

 

Lots of people managed to get lost before GPS was invented. So many that it wasn't considered newsworthy. Even today, if someone had taken that same road but wasn't following GPS instructions, it wouldn't be news.

 

What makes it news is that instead of blaming their own stupidity, people can now play the victim and blame it on the technology.

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I doubt very much if these people would have gotten in the trouble they did if they were using a good old road atlas.

 

Ah the good old days of driving until we could find a landmark or a road sign... What do you mean the map in grandma's Lincoln was printed before 1973?

 

I think nostalgia is clouding your judgement- in which case, what they need is a sextant and an astrolabe.

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