Drivers Stranded After Google Maps Pushes Them On Mud Road
July 1, 2019
We rely on technology more than ever to help us with our daily lives. Many Denver commuters recently found out, however, that even our modern day conveniences are far from perfect.
ABC 15 in Phoenix reported that on Friday, June 26th, drivers looking to find an alternative route to get around a crash that occurred near the Denver International Airport used the Google Maps app on their mobile devices.
The suggested detour that the app suggested left approximately a hundred cars stranded on a muddy, rutted, and impassible road.
The app directed dozens of drivers to 64th Avenue, where there is no pavement. Connie Monsees was on her way to pick up her husband at the airport when she took the road, which looked as though it might cut her commute time to the airport by half.
Initially, Monsees said it was a sunny day, and it didn’t appear to be a problem. But then the pavement ended, and the area had received enough rain to make parts of the road muddy and slippery.
In some places, only one car could go through at a time, and there were dozens of others who had also tried the alternate route suggested by Google Maps. Monsees realized that the route was a mistake, but a U-turn would have landed her into a field or a deep ditch.
Google’s detour caused significant damage to the front passenger wheel well of Monsees car, but she considers herself lucky. Other motorists got stuck in the ruts and ditches or one of the fields surrounding 64th Avenue.
Google said in a statement to ABC News, that while it works to provide the best directions for users, it cannot account for unforeseen circumstances such as weather and encourages drivers to use their best judgment.
Jayson Luber, the traffic anchor for KMGH in Denver, which originally reported the story, believes that people have become too reliant on their smartphones and GPS apps instead of using printed maps.