Couple Spends Two Days in Car Stuck in Snow, Blames Navigation App

The two were found stuck in snow two days later 1 photo
Photo: Skamania County Sheriff’s Office
Navigation apps like Google Maps, Waze, or Apple Maps are new-generation tools to beat traffic and reach a destination easier. Still, it goes without saying we shouldn’t always trust blindly the indications they provide.
That's because errors can affect every little piece of technology, including a navigation app that can end up leading you to the middle of nowhere without you having any idea about it.

This is what happened to Heidi Tran, 26, and Andy Nguyen, 28, both traveling in a rented SUV from Seattle to a rental cabin in Glenwood. The couple spent no less than two days stuck in the snow on a forest road after following the directions provided by a navigation app (its name hasn’t been disclosed, but you can bet it’s one of the three mentioned above). Any attempt to dig the car out pretty much failed because more snow fell overnight.

The Skamania County Sheriff’s Office was alerted by the family, which was unable to contact them, and the search started on Monday using a fixed-wing aircraft. According to local officials, there was no cellular signal in the area, and this is the reason the two were unable to reach out to emergency services or at least figure out where they are.

The good news is the driver managed to ration the fuel in the 2020 Toyota as well as the food they had in the car pretty efficiently. As a result, they were both found and brought back to the Trout Lake area unhurt and without the need for any medical attention.

Local authorities now warn drivers to never rely entirely on navigation apps, especially when traveling on forest roads during the winter.

Please do not rely solely on computerized navigation. If traveling on forest roads or areas that are not maintained during winter months, please consider changing your route,” the Skamania County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
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Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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