Drivers in dangerous 'sat nav' racing game

Sat Navs are threatening to become the most useful tool to help drivers get from A to B. But there's also a dangerous side to them, as many drivers can not resist trying to beat the estimated times that the devices display with each route, according to a survey.

The devices often give a minimum time for the journey, which assumes the driver is travelling at the maximum pemitted speed. For competitive drivers intent on beating the times, this means breaking the law.

But while the survey, by Sainsbury's Car Insurance, found that 7.2 million drivers actually do this, a far smaller number admit to breaking the law. However the results show that nearly 150,000 drivers have had an accident while 'GPS racing' during the last year.

Ben Tyte, head of car insurance at Sainsbury’s, said: 'We are encouraging drivers using this new technology to have the safety of any passengers, other road users and pedestrians at the forefront of their minds and not be tempted to become GPS racers.'

Philip Gomm of the RAC Foundation added: 'Drivers should treat their satnavs as guides, not gospel. We all know that real life gets in the way of the best planned journeys, and motorists need to leave enough leeway for unforeseen circumstances, rather than being intent on racing the clock. Breaking the law to try and beat a machine is not acceptable.'

Apparently drivers from the Yorkshire and Humberside region are the most likely Sat Nav racing cuplrits, with one in five admitting to having engaged in the practice.

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