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Satellite navigation and driving

Safety concerns while driving with SatNav devices

Across the world, driver distraction is a major cause of road accidents.  Sat Navs are an amazing piece of technology however can lead to bad habits and mistakes behind the wheel.

Follow the tips below from AA Car Insurance to get the most out of your Sat Nav and stay safe:

  • What you see must take priority over what the Sat Nav says.
    People have been marooned in fords, driven into rivers and down railways because their sat nav told them to. If the road looks wrong, don't take it.
  • You know what you're driving, the Sat Nav probably doesn't.
    If you have a large vehicle, or a trailer, you can't be sure that the road is suitable for you just because the sat nav tells you to go down it. Watch for signs.
  • Watch the road – not the Sat Nav.
    A sat nav can give all sorts of information about where you are going, much of which you don't need.
  • Put the sat nav in a sensible place.
    It should be in your line of sight – you don't want to have to look down or turn your head a long way – but it should not create a blind spot and obscure your view of the road. Put it where it won't injure anyone in an accident.
  • Don't try to programme the Sat Nav while driving.
    You know it will take one hand from the wheel, two eyes from the road and a brain from driving. Pull over to adjust settings.
  • Use all the Sat Nav's features.
    On a complicated, busy roundabout, it is unwise to take your eyes off the road to look at the sat nav, and much better to receive spoken instructions.
  • Check the route is practical before you start.
    If you put in the wrong destination, it will take you to the wrong destination. Does the route look right?
  • Update the Sat Nav regularly.
    It needs to know about new roads, new one way systems and generally keep itself up to date.
  • Remember, thieves like Sat Navs too.
    If it's detachable, always take it out when you leave the car. Thieves know that when people remove them they tend to keep them in the car, so mounts or suction cap marks also attract thieves.

AA Ireland Limited trading as AA Insurance is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland.