Sat-nav told motorist to drive Jeep into a lake
Salvage teams have pulled a Jeep SUV from Lake Champlain in Vermont, USA, after the car's driver was routed into it by his navigation software.
Following directions from Waze, a sat-nav app, the vehicle was routed off a boat launch and into the lake. The driver and two passengers didn't realise what was happening until they were already on the lake, which was frozen over. Luckily, all three got out safely.
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The vehicle's owner, who had lent the car to her friends for some local sight-seeing, said that she had assumed the instruction was a fluke – but upon trying to programme the route on her own phone, was also instructed to drive into the lake.
A spokesperson for Waze said they couldn't explain why the route guidance would suggest such a thing, but said the company was glad the car's passengers were all safe.
"It's impossible to comment here without seeing the user's driving file and we haven't received permission to do so – generally speaking. Waze maps are updated with millions of edits to adapt to real time road conditions daily, making them the most accurate available."
Waze augments its GPS data with reports from its users. Regular 'Wazers' can report accidents, traffic jams and police presences, while trusted users can edit the map themselves to update roads.
The Waze spokesperson added that the firm "encourages drivers to keep their eyes on the road and use all environmental information available to them to make the best decisions as they drive."
USA Today reports that conditions surrounding the incident were dark and foggy, leading to the driver making it 100 metres onto the frozen lake before realising what had happened.
Police confirmed that the driver had not been charged with any offence, willingly consenting to a sobriety test.