Australian police issued a warning today against using Apple Maps after responding to numerous stranded motorists in the Murray-Sunset National Park. A flaw in the application sent tourists 45 miles away from their intended destination of Mildura, Australia and into the dangerous outback.
Temperatures in the region can reach 115 degrees Fahrenheit, and some of the drivers were stranded without food or water for over 24 hours. Many of the people began walking through the hazardous terrain searching for a cell phone signal so they could call for help. Authorities reported that this left the motorists in a potentially life-threatening situation.
Authorities have contacted Apple in an attempt to correct the situation. They warn anyone traveling in the area to avoid using the Apple Maps application and to seek alternative mapping sources until the issue is resolved. The rival application Google Maps currently lists Mildura in the correct location. Apple dropped Google Maps from iOS in September, favoring their own Apple Maps format.
According to CNN, Apple spokesman Adam Howorth would not comment on the situation but pointed out that they are “working hard to fix Maps.” This is not the first issue with the Apple Maps application. In a previous statement, Apple CEO Tom Cook said:
“With the launch of our new Maps last week, we fell short on this commitment. We are extremely sorry for the frustration this has caused our customers and we are doing everything we can to make Maps better.”
In an interview with with Brian Williams of NBC News, aired December 7, Tim Cook stated:
“It didn’t meet our customers’ expectations, it didn’t meet our expectations of ourselves which are even higher than our customers,” “However, I can tell you—we screwed up, and we are putting the weight of the company behind correcting it.”