what's the harm?

What is this site?

List of Topics


Famous people

Scientific studies






RSS Feed New cases (RSS)

368,379 people killed, 306,096 injured and over $2,815,931,000 in economic damages

What's the harm in relying on GPS?

Satellite navigation systems are a godsend to the modern driver. But the data contained in them is not perfect and should not be relied on blindly. People can get hurt.  Read more about GPS navigation

Here are 10,582 people who were harmed by someone not thinking critically.

Bo Bai

Age: 32
Bedford Hills, New York

Rental car destroyed
January 2, 2008

He followed an instruction to turn right from his GPS putting him on a train track in front of an oncoming train. The resulting accident destroyed his rental car and delayed commuters for hours. He was ticketed was to be held liable for costs. Read more & more

Necdet Bakimci

Gibraltar, Lincolnshire, England

1600 miles off course on delivery
July 20, 2008

He programmed his destination of the Rock of Gibraltar as he left Antakya, Turkey. But because Gibraltar is technically part of the UK, the device routed him to another Gibraltar – a shore town in England. He was 1,600 miles off course. Read more & more

Photo of Paula Ceely

Paula Ceely

Age: 20
Whitland, Dyfed, Wales, UK

Auto wrecked by train collision
May 2007

Her GPS led her to a gate that she did not realize was a railroad crossing. When she heard the train horn, she knew it was trouble. She said later of satnavs: "People should be more careful with them - you never know where they might lead you." Read more

Julie Jackson, Delcie Fielder & dozens of others

Age: 45, 70, etc.
Brook End, Luckington, Chippenham, Wiltshire, UK

Flooded car, towing fees
April 2006

Following navigation system instructions in this town can lead you directly into a ford over the source of the river Avon. When its raining, the river overflows and the ford is not safe. Flooded cars have had to be towed dozens of times. Read more

Jose Silva

Age: 43
Bedford Hills, New York

Car destroyed
September 29, 2008

He said "he did what he was told" by his GPS and his car ended up stuck on the same train tracks as Bo Bai nine months earlier. A commuter train hit the car and hundreds of commuters were delayed. Read more

23 high school softball players

Washington Park Arboretum, Seattle, Washington

Injuries, bus destroyed
April 16, 2008

A charter bus driver ferrying a high school softball team relied on a GPS system and did not notice the clearance signs. The 11 foot high bus plowed into a 9 foot high bridge. 23 people were briefly hospitalized and the bus was destroyed. Read more

26 California vacationers

Age: 2 - 70
Grosvenor Arch, Utah

Stranded on 500-foot cliff
August 2, 2008

Twenty-six friends in four vehicles were travelling in Utah on vacation. After viewing Grosvenor Arch, they used GPS directions to head for Arizona. It led them down unpaved roads and to the edge of a 500 foot cliff. They had to be rescued by police. Read more

British railroad industry


£10 million & 5,000 hours of delays per year
February 10, 2008

Truck drivers in England, blindly following the instructions of their satnav systems, collide with up to 2,000 bridges per year, damaging them. This requires repairs to the bridge and often delays rail traffic that would use those bridges. Read more

"John Doe"

Age: 80
Hamburg, Germany

Trip disrupted, towing fees
October 2006

He followed the instructions of his GPS, even when it sent him into a construction site. His car got trapped in sand. Read more

"John Doe"

Age: 53
Berlin, Germany

Damaged his car, fines
October 2006

His GPS system said "turn right now". He obeyed without considering the consequences. He collided with a structure, damaging his car and the structure. He was fined. Read more

"Hayley X"

Age: Late 20s
Sheepy Magna, Atherstone, Leicestershire, UK

£96,000 auto destroyed, life endangered
March 3, 2007

Following the instructions on her navigation system to use a creek ford, the driver failed to notice it was swelled by torrential rain. The car was swept away and she had to be rescued. The car was a total loss. Read more

Return to the list of topics