Apple in Your Eye

Error In Apple Maps Causes Motorists to Drive Across Active Airport Runway

Just ignore that Boeing 737 in front of you, Kathy.
The major error. (Photo: BBC)

The major error. (Photo: BBC)

It’s been roughly a year since Apple released its botched Maps app and it’s still ruining lives. Most recently, drivers in Alaska were (mis)directed to drive across an active runway at Fairbanks International Airport as the app mistakes it for a regular road.

The BBC reports that the airport had to close the road that had been accidentally used by three motorists since the flaw was discovered on the app. A complaint filed by the airport to Apple says the app directs people to drive across the runway, rather than a nearby taxiway. 

An airport spokeswoman said that barricades were installed to block the entrance to the portion of the taxiway that the app directs people to. The airport reported the error to Apple and won’t reopen the surrounding roads until it’s corrected.

In two of the incidents, the airport called the drivers “persistent” for relying on their phone and not their instinct that perhaps bypassing a motion-activated gate, disregarding the warning signs and seeing a Boeing 737 crawl past them to not might indicate some faulty mapping.

“They needed to drive over a mile with all this before reaching the runway. But the drivers disregarded all that because they were following the directions given on their iPhones,” said assistant manager Angie Spear to the BBC.

An Apple spokesperson didn’t comment. In the mean time, drivers in Fairbanks might want to use Google Maps as it didn’t contain the error.

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