POLICE in Australia have warned drivers not to use Apple’s map software after a number of people ended up lost in the wilderness in scorching temperatures.
Motorists trying to find the south-eastern town of Mildura became lost after following the map system, which locates it about 43 miles (70km) from its actual position. One man was stranded for 24 hours in temperatures of up to 46C, and at least three more have had to be rescued, police said.
Tests on the mapping system show that Mildura is incorrectly listed as being in the middle of the Murray Sunset National Park.
Mildura police have now issued a warning on their website.
“Police are extremely concerned as there is no water supply within the park and temperatures can reach as high as 46 degrees, making this a potentially life-threatening issue,” it says. “Some of the motorists located by police have been stranded for up to 24 hours without food or water and have walked long distances through dangerous terrain to get phone reception.” Inspector Simon Clemence told Australia’s ABC News that he is concerned people using the Apple Maps app could find themselves in trouble. –SN
“If it was a 45-degree day, someone could actually die,” he said.
“It’s quite a dangerous situation, so we would be calling for people not to use the new Apple iPhone mapping system if they’re travelling from south Australia to Mildura.”
Police have contacted Apple in relation to the issue. Apple dropped Google as its map provider in September with the launch of its iOS 6 software for the iPhone and iPad.
It was panned by users for putting towns and cities in the wrong place and misspelling locations.
Well-known areas such as Westminster and Shepherd’s Bush in London were misspelt “Westminister” and “Shepard’s Bush”.
And search for Chessington in Surrey initially brought up Chessington Tyres Ltd in Plymouth, then Chessington House.
Apple CEO Tim Cook was forced to apologise for the glitches, and the manager who oversaw the software update has also left the company.