Car Accidents and Faulty GPS Directions: Will Digital Mapmakers Be Held Liable?

Personal Injury

Modern technology is fantastic. It expands our abilities and capabilities and makes completing tasks easier and life more interesting.

But as with all things, there is always a price to pay.

Global Positioning Systems (GPS) are standard equipment in most cars nowadays. Motorists all across the United States use them all the time to navigate from place to place. For those of us that are directionally challenged or remember having to use actual maps, Google maps, or AAA trip tickets to get somewhere, having a GPS makes travel so much easier and less stressful.

But GPS systems can be very distracting.

And they are not infallible.

Car Crashes and GPS Systems

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), GPS systems contribute significantly to distracted driving accidents.

And they pose another danger as well.

Malfunctioning GPS systems or GPS systems with outdated maps can cause accidents by directing drivers into unsafe or dangerous conditions.  In some extreme cases, faulty GPS instructions have caused drivers to drive onto train tracks or even off a bridge.

When a faulty GPS plays a role in causing a car crash, is the manufacturer liable?

To answer this question, you must distinguish between a manufacturing defect that causes injuries and driver inattention or error.

If there is a manufacturing defect in the GPS that makes it inherently dangerous which the manufacturer knew about but did nothing to either warn of it or correct it, and that defect causes an accident, then it may be possible to bring a lawsuit against the manufacturer.

But more commonly, GPS accidents are caused by a driver being distracted by the directions or following them despite obvious dangers. In these more frequent situations, it is the driver —not the GPS system—that is at fault and the driver will be liable for any injuries.

As a driver, you have a duty to drive carefully. If that means you need to ignore the GPS directions and use common sense, then that is what you must do.

If you choose to disobey the traffic laws, and that causes an accident, you will be held liable for any damage.

Personal Injury Attorneys in Cumming, Georgia. 

The personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Mark Weinstein, P.C., are here to help you. We serve clients in Atlanta, and in several counties throughout Georgia, including: Clayton County, Cobb County, Dekalb County, Douglas County, Fulton County, and Paulding County, among others.  To find out how we can help you, call us at: 770-888-7707. Or contact us here.

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