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SatNav Error Blamed For Cyclists Death

Article by: rob brady
Date: 9 Aug 2013

Yet again, a tragic death has been blamed on a satnav.

A driver, Steven James Conlan, was following his satnav on the A692 in County Durham, but apparently it did not warn him he was approaching a crossroads.

He drove straight across and hit cyclist, 55-year-old Grahame McGregor. Mr McGregor died in hospital as a result of his injuries five days later

Mitigating, Conlanís lawyer said that the satnav had recalibrated itself just before the crossroads having given a wrong instruction, it then failed to register the upcoming junction.

As a result Conlan suffered a lapse in concentration and failed to stop.

The prosecution said there were several warning signs before the junction. After admitting dangerous driving, Conlan will be sentenced later this month.


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Posted by sussamb on Fri Aug 09, 2013 2:37 pm Reply with quote

Yet again nothing to do with the satnav ... just poor driving Wink

Where there's a will ... there's a way.

Posted by M8TJT on Fri Aug 09, 2013 4:12 pm Reply with quote

Had he been looking out of the window instead of his 're-calibrating' SatNav he might just have noticed the cross roads and the cyclist. So the sat nav was to blame. It distracted him!
How the hell can "As a result Conlan suffered a lapse in concentration and failed to stop" be mitigating circumstances.

Posted by sussamb on Fri Aug 09, 2013 4:20 pm Reply with quote

Hopefully it won't be accepted as 'mitigating' ...

But if he's that 'distracted' by something in his car he's to blame, not what distracted him ... my daughter in the back could 'distract' me on most journeys, but I don't let her, and I don't let my satnav, radio etc do so either Wink

Where there's a will ... there's a way.

Posted by JimmyTheHand on Fri Aug 09, 2013 8:44 pm Reply with quote

The only acceptable reason I can think of to be distracted by a satnav when driving is when it does something to put your life in danger - such as explode or catch fire (falling off the windscreen because you failed to secure it doesn't count) - anything else I would be too ashamed to admit, let alone try arguing suitable reason in court


Posted by mrg2003 on Sun Aug 11, 2013 8:19 am Reply with quote

Drive a car into someone, and use satnav as your defence. Use a knife or gun get 15 years, use a car, get off.


Posted by superref_63 on Mon Aug 12, 2013 7:28 am Reply with quote

This is not the Sat Nav thought - just another poor driver balmaing something for his tragic error!

Posted by Intrakota on Mon Aug 12, 2013 8:38 am Reply with quote

The law regarding TV's in cars must have changed, not that I have ever picked any up you understand, something about them been located so as not to cause a distraction to the driver.

What you want, when you want it.

Posted by Guivre46 on Mon Aug 12, 2013 2:22 pm Reply with quote

My devices have never warned of cross-roads, the road signs do that. This is no defence at all.

Mike R [aka Wyvern46]
Go 530T - unsupported
Go550 Live [not renewed]
Kia In-dash Tomtom

Posted by gem on Mon Aug 12, 2013 11:01 pm Reply with quote


It's a wonder he didn't argue his sat nav never told him about the cyclist. I think the defence lawyer probably suggested that would not be a clever move.

We all make mistakes but this driver seems to have (sadly) gone well away from "reasonable care and attention".

I notice though in the Glasgow evening newspaper today a story about the police attending several court cases for a motorist who went "over" a faded painted mini roundabout.

He refused to pay a £30 fine as the roundabout was badly faded, as agreed by the council. But the police had nothing better to do or enforce other dangerous driving. Meanwhile another 2 big crashes this evening around the city.

And a murder on a bus.

But the roundabout driving case is more easy to persue.....

Posted by sussamb on Tue Aug 13, 2013 6:02 am Reply with quote

Depends on the circumstances though. Drivers who don't go around mini roundabouts cause accidents, because other drivers assume they will. If he cut the roundabout causing other traffic to take avoiding action his driving was 'careless' and possibly even 'dangerous' so it's only right that he was prosecuted. I'm sure if he'd hit your car while doing so you'd agree Wink

Where there's a will ... there's a way.

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