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Watchdog warns Taiwanese not to rely on GPS

Taiwan: The Consumers’ Foundation in Taiwan urged people not to be over-reliant on GPS devices, to avoid potentially fatal accidents that may result from following GPS directions. The foundation said that consumers who use navigation systems should still keep alert and not rely too much on the gadget.

The foundation is consumer rights watchdog. It is a non-government and non-profit organisation in Taiwan.

Foundation chairperson Joann Su said that one of the most common problems that consumers have with navigation devices is that they neglect to keep the map updated. As a general rule, the navigation system should be updated at least once every two years, otherwise the driver may encounter problems, such as imprecise positioning or errors in driving directions, she said. “Drivers who spend too much time focusing on the screen that displays the map or driving directions may fail to notice approaching vehicles or other objects and cause traffic accidents,” she added

Imprecise navigation systems may also cause the GPS to report that the car is in a river when the vehicle is actually on a bridge, so it is unwise to trust the navigator to be 100 percent accurate, Su continued.

Su advised drivers to reset the system when encountering problems with the navigation system by starting the positioning over or choosing a different route. Another way to avoid getting misguided is to check print or online maps ahead of time rather than being led blindly by the navigation device, she said.

Source: www.taipeitimes.com