My GPS Failed Me On Staten Island.

Topic 24743 | Page 1

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Greg's Comment
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This was my second week on the road, so I thought it was time I bought my own fancy truckers GPS for my trip from Syracuse, NY to Perth Amboy, NJ. The excitement over my new gadget was building as the Pilot cashier retrieved it from the safe. I unboxed it in the truck, popped in the address, and off I went into the rush hour snowstorm with my sleepy trainer riding shotgun. I handled my first winter driving experience through the Catskills well, and everything was going fine. I was well-rested, had made a proper trip plan, and thought I had it all figured out. I navigated the NJ Turnpike like a pro, bobbing and weaving with the rest of the lunatics between Newark airpot and seaport, daydreaming a little because I was on the very route Tony Soprano drives in the opening credits. Just as I sung my final "got yourself a gun" and puffed my imaginary cigar, my GPS screwed up. It didn't realize I was in the express lane on I-95, and told me to exit. I knew better, but did what the $400 robot lady said instead of trusting my trip plan. I ended up on Staten Island, and had no choice but to make an illegal move or two to get back on track. My trainer had grown up in the area and knew where to go, but stayed silent to teach me a valuable lesson. I handled it well, and had the ship back on course after a tight detour through a mile or two of narrow streets, crazy ramps, and skinny bridges. We had a good laugh about it afterwards, but it could have been a lot worse. Study the map. Write things down. Talk to other truckers who have been there before. GPS is a valuable aid, but it can and will fail you at the worst possible moment. Do your homework and memorize/ write down your route. Know before you go. Use your GPS, but don't rely on it. Trust your directions and instincts. Don't just blindly follow a purple line on a screen and obey the robot lady's voice when you know something isn't right.

G-Town's Comment
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It didn't realize I was in the express lane on I-95, and told me to exit. I knew better, but did what the $400 robot lady said instead of trusting my trip plan.

The most important aspects of this lesson are in the above paragraph. Especially the “I didn’t realize...” comment. A momentary lapse of concentration or distraction was the root cause of everything else that occurred from that point forward.

It is absolutely critical to maintain focus and concentration, especially in highly congested urban areas you are unfamiliar with. I am frequently in North Jersey and maintain an elevated level of vigilance even though I know the area like the back of my hand.

I’m glad you came out of this no worse for the wear. Thanks for posting it.

Good luck with the rest of your training.

Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

It didn't realize I was in the express lane on I-95, and told me to exit. I knew better, but did what the $400 robot lady said instead of trusting my trip plan.

double-quotes-end.png

The most important aspects of this lesson are in the above paragraph. Especially the “I didn’t realize...” comment. A momentary lapse of concentration or distraction was the root cause of everything else that occurred from that point forward.

It is absolutely critical to maintain focus and concentration, especially in highly congested urban areas you are unfamiliar with. I am frequently in North Jersey and maintain an elevated level of vigilance even though I know the area like the back of my hand.

I’m glad you came out of this no worse for the wear. Thanks for posting it.

Good luck with the rest of your training.

Ok... this is ironic, and sorry GTown but IT didnt realize..... the GPS didnt realize he was in the express lane. They driver realized ut but followed the GPS blindly.

But good story. imagine if u were newly solo!

Greg's Comment
member avatar

I said "it" didn't realize. I knew I was in the express lanes, right where I was supposed to be. I wasn't distracted. But GPS thought I was on the other side of the wall, and unexpectedly told me to exit. I trusted it above my own instincts and did what it said, even though it didn't seem right.

double-quotes-start.png

It didn't realize I was in the express lane on I-95, and told me to exit. I knew better, but did what the $400 robot lady said instead of trusting my trip plan.

double-quotes-end.png

The most important aspects of this lesson are in the above paragraph. Especially the “I didn’t realize...” comment. A momentary lapse of concentration or distraction was the root cause of everything else that occurred from that point forward.

It is absolutely critical to maintain focus and concentration, especially in highly congested urban areas you are unfamiliar with. I am frequently in North Jersey and maintain an elevated level of vigilance even though I know the area like the back of my hand.

I’m glad you came out of this no worse for the wear. Thanks for posting it.

Good luck with the rest of your training.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Yes you did. Sorry about that.

Overall I still think my reply is relevant though, especially to others not quite at the stage you are.

North Jersey is difficult to navigate under the best of circumstances. GPS systems get easily “confused” when a complex confluence of roads and highways occurs at high speed. It’s hilarious to watch mine constantly recalibration when headed south on I95 near Seacacus through the Newark Airport area.

Greg's Comment
member avatar

Absolutely, it was a rookie mistake that could have been avoided with better preparation. And that's exactly where my gps started acting up, on I-95 south of Newark Airport. In this case it wasn't a huge deal, luckily it happened in an industrial area. I kept my cool and was able to get back on track. But it could have been a big problem, had I ended up somewhere with no room to turn around.

Yes you did. Sorry about that.

Overall I still think my reply is relevant though, especially to others not quite at the stage you are.

North Jersey is difficult to navigate under the best of circumstances. GPS systems get easily “confused” when a complex confluence of roads and highways occurs at high speed. It’s hilarious to watch mine constantly recalibration when headed south on I95 near Seacacus through the Newark Airport area.

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