The judge expressed his thoughts in a recent case involving an accident caused by a Czech lorry driver using the sat-nav system in the cabin to figure out which way to go, only to end up smashing into another truck approximately two years ago.
The collision was so massive the other lorry driver ended up becoming unconscious, eventually being rushed to the hospital with severe injuries, including a fractured skull and broken bones in his face.
“Driving by sat nav is common but lethal. The number of times that non-national articulated lorry drivers can been seen doing it is worrying and this is an example of the results of sat nav driving,” the judge has been quoted as saying.
Indeed, when not used right, navigation systems can become a major source of distraction behind the wheel, especially as drivers are tempted to look at the screen to figure out which way to go. It is the reason most developers have already implemented spoken guidance and voice command support, all in an attempt to encourage drivers to stick with hands-free navigation and voice input.
Research conducted by TRL Limited for IAM RoadSmart last year revealed that even systems like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto could distract drivers, despite all the improvements the parent companies have implemented to prevent this from happening.
The study has found that setting up a new destination into the sat-nav system or a mobile phone running a navigation app is more dangerous than opening a water bottle or eating a packet of crisps, all because it forces drivers to take their eyes off the road.