GPS Failure Could Mean Disaster

One couple is lucky to be home safe and sound in Reno right now. They credit the fact that they always travel prepared for being alive and healthy. John and Starry Rhoads always travel by car with food, water and warm clothing packed in the trunk. This time, it proved to literally save their lives when their GPS led them astray.

The couple was traveling home to Reno from a visit in Portland. They were driving on Highway 31, which goes through Silver Lake Orgeon. The GPS unit told them to turn right onto a forest service road. They followed that, as well as some smaller spur roads, about 35 miles. Their SUV then became stuck in over a foot of snow.

For nearly three days, neither John nor Starry had any reception on their cell phones, so they couldn’t call for help. On the third day, a freak of nature (or change in the atmosphere) caused them to suddenly have weak signals. They took turns calling 911. Emergency crews were able to use the phones’ GPS tracking to locate the Rhoads’ and pull their truck out of the snow. They then returned safely to Reno.

We rely so much on devices such as the GPS. Sure, they give us the shortest route. But is it always the safest route? In this instance, the answer is unequivocally no. I know it doesn’t happen often, but one life lost would be one life too many.

What are your thoughts? Do you feel that we perhaps rely a little too heavily on automated devices like this to get us from point A to point B in our lives?