back to article BMW driver follows satnav to edge of cliff

A Doncaster man is facing a "hefty recovery bill", and an appearance before the beak on a driving without due care and attention rap, after following his BMW's satnav to the edge of a West Yorkshire cliff, the Telegraph reports. Robert Jones, 43, was driving in "broad daylight" on Sunday morning en route to visit some chums. …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    BMW driver.

    Say it all!

  2. Paul

    blind leading the blind

    Typical BMW owner

  3. Anonymous Coward

    Anyone want to hack TomTom?

    To give suicide instructions? "Drive into garage. Leave engine running. Open car windows. Close garage door. Wait. End of line." The gene pool is getting rather stagnant.

  4. Andy Watt


    What a dipshit. If you rely on your satnav to such an extent that you don't actually look at the road and make some informed choices about where you're going (he could have got out to take a look?) then you deserve all you get.

    Modern reliance on "dumb" tech will produce more and more stories like this. Hell, the other day Jennifer Aniston apparently dumped her boyfriend because he was very publicly twittering too much and said to her that he was working too hard to talk to her...

    If this guy relies on satnav for his job god help his customers and colleagues.

  5. Toby Rose

    Take the ferry

    Of the 59 phrases that make up my sat-nav's vocabulary, I've wondered when I might be advised to take the ferry, (large unavoidable metal thing at a river or sea crossing). Maybe it would be better to include a watch-out-for-the-impending-cliff-edge! phrase instead.

  6. Anonymous Coward

    Poot chap!

    Leaving aside the fact that chappie was driving a BMW, I can understand how something like this can happen. You see a narrow road which the Satnav suggests you take, you follow the directions NOT KNOWING WHATS AHEAD!, and that's it. You're out of road.

    I used to cover some pretty areas in Wales, Dorset Cornwall etc and many a time the Satnav has suggested taking one and I've always thought better. I have got my car stuck in the past, but that was my own stupid fault, not the GPS. That's why I am pretty careful now.

    Without seeing the road, I can't really throw stones at the driver, but I bet he felt a right pillock..

  7. Wun Hung Lo


    If he'd failed to stop he'd be a front-runner for the next round of Darwin Awards.

  8. 4a$$Monkey


  9. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    In a word....


    What an utter utter cock.

    Hope he's f*cking banned from driving anything more risky than a supermarket trolley for the rest of his brain foresaken life.

    Paris... for blatantly obvious reasons...

  10. Dark Ian

    I love the way he only stopped when he actually drove into a fence

    Once I was 'recovered' when my car broke down (no satnav involved at this point), and the pick-up driver insisted on driving from Coventry to Manchester via Birmingham, because the satnav didn't have the M6 Toll on it (allegedly) and he 'didn't believe there was another way to Manchester'. Clearly the road signs were lying. (Perhaps it's because of how easily duped many of us are by what's written on a screen that we believe our lovely Fisherprice-coloured XP 'desktops' are all rosy and good, and not in fact loaded with spyware - an additional IT angle for you there)

    Of course a good experiment for the reader would be to 'hack' their friends'/enemies' satnav devices so that they 'insist' the owner carry out a range of hilarious activites, from messing themselves after a particularly heavy vindaloo to ramming all 'I must drive at exactly 40mph everywhere' drivers.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    "I rely on my satnav"

    To the point of thinking it's right even when its obvious you are off the road? What sort of brain dead numpty is this man? Can we find out who he works for because a company that employs such brain dead people is probably one to avoid.

    I wonder if he's been fleeced by our Nigerian friends yet... he seems to be the right type!

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  13. Anonymous Coward


    It was the Satnav guv!

    Which tool drives almost drives off a cliff just because a satnav tells him to. The worst thing of all he relies on it for his job!!

    It reminds of the chick who's car got pranged by a train after she left it parked on a level crossing. Pillocks. What happens if the satnav's batteries run out? Do the drivers just stop since they lack any intelligence to figure out their own way or what?

    Go - maybe he should have kept driving!

  14. k0rrupt10n
    Thumb Down

    Sounds familiar...

    Wasn't that last night's Dr Who repeat plot?

  15. Anonymous Coward


    Not a paid-up member of the self-preservation society, then.

  16. Seán


    How did this guy make it to 43?

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Next BMW advance...

    BMW must surely be thinking of saving money on windscreens and indicator stalks?

    I mean, if BMW drivers would rather look at a Sat-Nav, why not put something else there in place of the windscreen? A 42in LCD, perhaps?

    And the indicators? Well, no BMW driver has used them in the last 10yrs. Surely a deprecated function?

  18. Jason Rivers

    driving AID...

    I think there's a reason why thay're classed as a driving AID..... don't think of sat nav as some nagging person in the passenger seat (though you probably shouldn't listen to them either) telling you where to go, think of it like that big paper map sat in your glove box, but doesn't obstruct your windscreen while trying to drive...

    Sat Nav's should come with a competence test, if you are incompetent of working out when the road you're about to go down leads to a dead end, or off the edge of a cliff, you really shouldn't be driving the car in the first place.

    I generally tell my Sat nave to "Get Lost" but it never listens...

  19. Eponymous Cowherd

    BMW driver

    'nuf said.

  20. Fred

    Dumb ass...

    title says it all...

  21. Dave


    Not exactly ROTM, is it? More of a subtle opposite: Fall of The Machine (but with meat-ware still inside.)

    <- Flames for the inevitable (movie) result.

  22. Dominic

    What a moron

    Someone needs to take away his licence for being too stupid to be allowed out without a carer. Learn to read a map you retard.

  23. Anonymous Coward

    I feel sorry for him....

    ....he simply got confused as there was no car to tailgate....a BMW drivers nightmare.

  24. Anonymous Coward


    What a suprise... another BMW driver not paying attention!

    Or was he just busy trying to overtake time itself and get back to saturday?

  25. Anonymous Coward

    What a


  26. AndyC

    freaking idiot...

    Need I say more?

    Stop, well, he should have

  27. Gary F

    Name and shame

    What satnav make and model was this man using?

    Maybe the software needs refining so it says "Warning! You are coming to the end of your country. Warning! You live on an island!"

  28. Andrew Moore
    Thumb Up

    I think this is a brilliant idea...

    we haven't had a good cull of the stupid for while now.

  29. Sebastian Brosig
    Paris Hilton


    sue the hell out of tomtom!

  30. breakfast Silver badge

    Encouraging numpties on the road

    I know they are handy but I swear satnav has been responsible for so much dodgy driving as people just listen to the navigation and stop paying attention to what is going on around them. Pretty soon I expect they'll be there with phones on the "don't use one and drive" list...

    Also it's another gadget on the growing list of things designed to make us more stupid ( see also: Twitter ) which I am increasingly starting to suspect are part of a despicable plot on the part of the Rising Machines to make humanity so incapable of independant thought, concentration or any other significant mental endeavour that we are powerless to resist our robot masters when they decide it is time to take over.

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Very easy to do in rural areas.

    Having been a victim of a satnav taking me up a road over a hill, over the apex and suddenly finding myself rolling through a field down the other side. No amount of "should be looking where you are going" can account for a road disappearing without warning. Especially if there are no road signs indicating that the road ends 5 yards after the top of the hill. The last road sign I saw a mile back was the national speed limit sign. Turns out after the event, that the national speed limit road finishes once it reaches a house, then it becomes a private road for the last 100 yards up the hill. Only it's not marked.

    This is a problem with rural roads. In densely popular areas you have lots of indicators that warn of impending danger, road signs, stripes in the road becoming closer together and longer. In the country you have nothing, and these are the most common road you'll find a national speed limit sign, but no signs to slow down, unless you are approaching a densely populated area.

  32. Lottie

    BMW drivers

    I swear, these people don't pay attention to what's outside the windows anyway.

    *angry cyclist goes raaah*

  33. TeeCee Gold badge

    I sometimes wonder.

    How many of these "it woz the satnav wot dunnit" errors are due to the user selecting the wrong item off the little route planning bit where you select car, bicycle or pedestrian* as your chosen mode of travel?

    It's hard to be outsmarted by a small plastic box with a tiny CPU in it, but some people seem to manage it.

    *Yes, "sodding great truck" *is* missing from mine, which is why drivers of such should cough up for the commercial quality product rather than relying on a 99 quid tomtom from Halfords......

  34. Matt

    Shame it didn't go over

    could have been a good Darwin.

  35. jai

    "Please turn left....

    ...when you have a great idea Charlie"

  36. Yorkshirepudding

    BMW sat nav

    maybe it was trying to find a way to poland

  37. Cameron Colley


    Lucky for him BMWs have a "50:50 weight distribution".

  38. adnim

    This is how it will be

    "It [the satnav] kept insisting the path was a road, even as it was getting narrower and steeper. I just trusted it. You don't expect to be taken nearly off a cliff."

    No Skynet, no hordes of intelligent machines scouring the Earth of the last traces of humanity. This is how the machines will take over, we will place implicit trust in them. We will obey blindly and without question. In the not to distant future, every decision, every human act will be a machine "AI" created or assisted solution.

    Humanity isn't going to go out in a nuclear flash and subsequent cleansing of the planet by machine overlords. It's going to go out slowly in a random and chaotic manner driven by human stupidity and badly programmed software.

    There will be no malevolent machine AI wiping humanity off the planet. Just stupid humans who cannot perform a simple task or come to a decision without the aid of, or instruction from, one of millions of disparate and poorly programmed unintelligent devices.

  39. Ian Stephenson

    Without due care and attention.

    BMW on the edge of a cliff... hmmm that also counts as a twatdangle.

    Stop sign.. well it's not rocket science is it?

  40. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Common sense.

    Good. Glad to hear it. For far too long it's been the preserve of idiots to go taking their waily "satnav made me do it" stories to the redtops and be comforted in the arms of a worldview that all technology is inherently bad and malicious, good on plod being able to take advantage of t'awd lazy journalism staple to promote the small detail that driving without due *care* to make sure what you're doing is sensible and *attention* on the road ahead is, er, driving without due care and attention (careless driving), actually.

  41. Clarissa
    Thumb Down

    Yet another story..

    ... about a tosser who disengaged their brain as soon as they engaged their sat-nav. Though given his choice of car and the fact that he uses his sat-nav extensively for his job then I'd say the brain shut down is probably irreversible by now.

    Hopefully the cost of recovering his car will be extracted from him rather then the local tax payers having to cough up for his stupidity

  42. The BigYin
    Thumb Down

    What a moron

    He obviously does not have the wit to drive safely. Jail him and then ban him for life.

  43. Jon Axtell


    As someone who lives just below where his car got stuck I can testify that he is a prat of the upmost. There is no reason why he disbelieved his eyes and kept going along a path which was obviously not a road. As for being a "professional driver" and trusting his satnav, words fail me.

    One thing I am glad about the case is that the police are going to charge him with driving without due care and attention. It's about time such stupid actions were publicised so that fewer drivers make such mistakes - especially truck drivers.

    More pictures on the Halifax Courier website and elsewhere

  44. Fluffykins Silver badge

    BMW Driver

    'nuff said

  45. Ed Blackshaw Silver badge

    "I rely on my satnav. I couldn't do without it for my job"

    Yes, I wonder how on earth ordinary people managed to navigate before the wondrous satnav was available. I hear tell of a mythical device, knwoledge of which is passed to only the initiated few - known only as 'map'.

  46. Tony Green

    Typical BMW driver

    Probably thought he could intimidate the cliff into getting out of his way.

  47. Simon Westerby
    Dead Vulture

    Natural selection

    tbh its just the next level of Natural selection at work...

  48. Chris

    Oh noes!

    I've just bought a BMW. From the comments here you'd think all BMW drivers are the antichrist.

  49. Anonymous Coward

    @Jaowon. Your example is different.

    Mr BMW saw something was wrong before it was too late to recover the situation but made a decision to follow the satnav. This is an example of someone gathering data before making their decision (to drive over a cliff.)

    You launched yourself at the national speed limit over a blind summit on an unfamiliar road. This is an example of someone choosing not to gather data (what is over the hill?) before making their decision (to drive too fast).

    As for "In the country you have nothing" - you very often do. The indication is that you are in the countryside and there aren't many signs. This means "take care".

    Stop - because maybe you should.

  50. Kevin Reader

    He should have noticed the lack of road, but...

    While I agree with all the posts that query his ability to use his eyes for anything further than the satnav. It is interesting to find the location on a map. It appears to be called "Watty Lane":,-2.197152&sspn=0.158839,0.416794&ie=UTF8&ll=53.704919,-2.109879&spn=0.002483,0.006512&t=h&z=17

    As far as I can see his final failure was in failing to make the left turn that might have got him onto the next road! It doesn't even look like he tried. So maybe he couldn't see the satnav properly either. Interestingly google show the lane running a bit further north across the field so maybe it was navigable (to a 4x4) at some point. I guess that his Satnav developers got their data on the cheap and allow you to use any road as big as a Lane.

    Stop - as that's what he needed.

  51. Steve Evans


    After seeing the BBC link - with picture - (Thanks 4a$$Monkey), I see the Police are charging him with undue care and attention (well they don't have a charge of being a pillock!)

    I'm just wondering if you can be charged with anything when you are not driving on the public road. For example, if I pull onto my parents drive, and decide to ram their car a couple of times, IIRC (not that I have tried it!), I'm on private land, so I can pretty much do what I like.

  52. Mike Bell

    Luddites, the lot of you!

    Actually, I think old-fashioned maps are bloody dangerous compared to sat-navs. They're fine if you have a navigator sitting next to you in the car but - to be honest - a good sat-nav will give verbal instructions that are right 99.9% of the time. Far safer than holding a map against the steering wheel. IF you even have a good map of the area that you happen to be in.

    I only had cause to gripe once myself when a trip in the Lake District ended up on a farm track that needed gates to be opened. Cost me about half an hour, I suppose. Nothing, compared to the convenience of the sat-nav on numerous other trips.

  53. P.Nutt

    BMW drivers!

    I swear most of the BWM drivers cant be bothered to use indicators so what chance has looking out the windscreen got. Servers the tw@t right for over risding common sense with a driving aid, I wonder if this same guy thinksk cruise control actualyl steers his car also.

  54. Trygve Henriksen

    Of course he trusted his GPS...

    It's smarter than him, after all...

    Reading a map?

    You mean, actually unfold it, manually find the route and turnoffs, then fail to fold it and just cram the wadded-up paper back into the glove compartment?

    Or even, horrors, reading roadsigns...

  55. Alfie


    Think I found it on Google Maps marked a Watty Lane. It looks like the tarmac stopped about 500m and two farmhouses before the dangle point. At what point did he think that perhaps this road was unsuitable for a 5 series BMW? And at 11am on a Sunday, was he still pissed from the night before?

  56. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Next BMW advance...

    >BMW must surely be thinking of saving money on windscreens and indicator stalks?

    They've already done that, when have you ever seen a BMW driver indicate?

    The indicator lights are a sort of invisibility shield to avoid detection by parking wardens used whenever they are parked illegally, read, whenever they stop.

  57. Dale


    This is actually a feature of newer TomToms designed to make driving safer by removing people who shouldn't be driving from the roads. In this case it was successful for at least nine hours.

  58. Anonymous Coward

    Actually, this has just reminded me...

    ...of an incident I was involved in some years ago.

    A gas leak had necessitated the closure of a main road at short notice and a diversion sign had been set up to direct traffic into the nearby village. From there, the diversion led to the next village by way of back roads, and then back on to the main road.

    Unfortunately, the second diversion sign was nearly invisible in the darkness, so all the main-road traffic (including me) missed the turning and just went straight on through the first village. This put us all on to a no-through road that gradually turned into a single-track lane, and then a farm track, and then deposited us all into a field up on the nearby downs.

    It was quite a sight in the darkness to see a field full of vehicles realising they had been mis-directed and attempting to turn around as a constant stream of new ones arrived, blocking everyone's exit. Eventually the problem was solved by people walking back down the lane to stop more vehicles piling in.

    But the moral of this story is... When the road is deteriorating, at what point do you actually decide that you've been mis-directed? My experience suggests that most people (including me) make that decision rather too late.

  59. Openminded Cynic

    Self Preservation Society?

    Re: Dark Ian: I'm curious as to what you would suggest is the best route from Coventry to Manchester if not the M6. The M6 TOLL is good for relief from traffic but the route is over 5 miles longer than the regular M6 and will probably cost the poor bugger towing your car £10 in real money so is only really worth considering if your travelling at rush hour.

    I'm amazed by the number of people who can judge a persons character by what make of car they drive. Next we'll be locking people up based upon their skin colour or religeous beliefs...

  60. General A. Annoying

    He must be relieved...

    of his driving licence and car keys with immediate effect.

    What a complete ARSE.

  61. Dazed and Confused

    First time?

    Can't believe his SatNav has never tried to take him to dumb places before. My Nokia one is for ever claim I've reached my destination when I'm miles from anywhere, and no where near where I wanted to go.

  62. Anonymous Coward


    Fair enough, he's a complete nutter.

    But about the satnav telling him it was a road. It plainly (from the photograph) isn't. So it's not a public highway, and at best it's a bridleway -- from the looks of things.

    In that case, why is he being charged with a motoring offence? He was just doing a spot of greenlaning, and like all BMWs, it doesn't have the backbone for it. At worst, he should be charged with criminal damage to a fence, but even that seems to have stood up pretty well to the Deutsche Plastick.

    Now, as for calling the bobbies in on this, that's a bit stupid. He should have walked down to the nearest farm and paid a farmer a few quid to haul him out. Stupid twonk.

  63. Mountford D

    Reminds me...

    Some time ago, if you had asked for directions from Lands End, Cornwall, UK to New York, USA, Google Maps would have told you to "Swim across Atlantic". Question is: Has Google removed that feature because too many potential Darwin Award candidates were being picked up by the Coast Guard? Shame, really...

  64. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Sat Nav is a driving AID

    This has happened so often now, what was the last one? Girl drives into a river in her Merc?

    These sat navs should come with a big warning on them that they are a DRIVING AID ONLY.

    I'm sure lots of us with these things have been told to do some silly stuff by our sat navs but have the common sense to carry on going and wait for a new route to be worked out or whatever.

  65. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Must be an American driver?

    Did this chap actually have a drivers license? How many pints did he consume before his adventurous trip? Perhaps he's really an American driver? That would explain the situation.

  66. Damien Thorn

    utter twat

    Too right without due care and attention, and the stupid twat didnt even have the intelligence to keep going and get a darwin award. selfish moron.

    what type of complete and utter moron follows sat nav when they run out of road?

    People like him should wear a bright yellow t-shirt with "Fackrard" written on it - and on the back "RESCUE ME" so we can pull his stupid corpse back out of whatever the idiot got himself into.

  67. Darkside

    Should be banned from driving

    He didn't notice the road had stopped and he was following a footpath?

    He's too stupid to have a driving licence. Lifetime ban.

  68. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I agree - I remember being given some written instructions to get to a friends house in rural Kent and, being a city boy myself, I got completely and utterly lost. This was primarily because the road on the left I should of taken (described as the 3rd on the left) was the first thing on the left that looked anything remotely like a road - the rest looked like slightly more worn away bits of grass.

    Time we concreted over the countryside I say!!!

  69. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Pure idiocy. First, the man drops $3k on a satnav that's little better than a $200 Garmin, and then clearly doesn't watch the road, and on top of it all is apparently not a particularly good driver as he is unable to reverse a vehicle in very tight circumstances

  70. thomas k.

    if all your friends ...

    I can just hear his mum saying, "If all your your friends drove their BMWs off a cliff, would you do it too?"

  71. Tony T

    Good old Google Maps

    ...will take you down the very same track - Watty Lane - if you ask it for directions from Parkin Lane, Todmorden to Rochdale Road, Todmorden.

  72. David

    i'd gladly do the same

    if i ever decided to get a satnav. Me I like looking at maps and knowing where I am, and I have the luxury of time to do that.

    the photo on the bbc site shows a track that I'd hapily drive up in the sticks.

  73. Anonymous Coward

    @Very easy to do in rural areas.

    "Having been a victim of a satnav taking me up a road over a hill, over the apex and suddenly finding myself rolling through a field down the other side."

    You were clearly driving too fast then.... you should be able to stop in the distance specified.

    And this idiot had clearly driven some way down the path, and it is very clearly a path. Only the most obtuse BMW driving members of the population could ever confuse it with a road

  74. Christoph

    That's very good driving

    He actually managed to notice that his Big Metal Willy was about to fall off a cliff? That's very good, for someone driving one of those.

  75. Ross Fleming
    Thumb Up

    Missing the beauty

    Bravo to the Beemer/satnav! It clearly recognised the lesser mind behind the wheel and tried to do something about it. It almost, ALMOST succeeded.

    I for one welcome our human killing mechanical (r)overlords.

  76. mad clarinet

    The funny thing.....

    How many people don't trust the computer on their desk but totally rely on their Satnav. Many times I've pointed this out to people - and they don't like it because they are relying on a computer to tell them where to go.

    Would have made a decent Darwin, maybe he should get a 'special mention'.

    I have a Satnav and its come in very handy for me. I don't, however, follow its instructions blindly. Its a tool - it assists you but does not replace the person looking where they're going.

    Then again - its a BMW driver so I'm not surprised.....

  77. Psymon
    IT Angle

    I was about to join the hordes in slagging him off...

    I'm a Darwinist, and I do personally believe that we need to take the warning labels off everything letting stupidity sort itself out.

    then I looked at the picture. Seriously, I was looking forward to giving this guy a good roasting until I inspected the image to find a typical scenario so many townies find themselves in if they dare venture away from the street lamps. This guy was just particularly unlucky to get stuck. Defeated not by the cliff, but the overly sharp corner.

    I heartily agree with Jaowon on this one. I've seen plenty of roads like that in yorkshire and lincolnshire. During WWII, the government had a programme of removing all the signs from our roads in case the germans invaded, so they wouldn't be able to find their way around our country.

    It would have been really nice if they'd put the bastards back up afterwards though! I've driven for miles along faceless, nameless roads, only to find them slowly diminish into footpaths or fields. I'd wager the ONLY sign he'd seen in the last 15 miles of his journey was on that little LCD screen. My dad used to run a recovery service in licolnshire, and there are plenty of roads like this that couldn't have been better traps for cars if you had sat down and designed them as such.

    The police grossly exaggerated the "hanging off the edge of a cliff" part. clearly from the image, all 4 wheels are clearly planted on tera firma. His front bumper is touching the fence, but clearly this is from futile attempts to get round the 90 degree bend. If he had 4 wheel drive, he could have reversed, but a Discovery wouldn't have made that corner either due to its size. The road looks totally unsuitable for vehicles, but it won't have when it started.

    I can easily understand the mindset. "God, I'm well off the beaten track here, but roads are built to link one point to another, so if I keep going, I'm bound to find a way out" Unfortunately, on those roads, by the time you realise you're trapped, it's too late.

    Yes, he should have got out and walked the path, but hindsight is 20:20. More importantly, where were the signs saying no entry or 4 wheel drive only? The locals would have known, but only from experience.

  78. Eponymous Cowherd


    I don't suppose the driver worked for Microsoft and the sat-nav was a TomTom out for revenge

  79. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    There's your precautionary measures right there.

    If people are talking about banning violent games because they *might* cause violent behaviour, or violent porn because they *might* cause sex crimes, what about banning satnav because it *does* cause fuckwittery?

  80. Anonymous Coward

    I was only following orders!


    > These sat navs should come with a big warning on them that they are a DRIVING AID ONLY.

    Er, they do :-)

    All the instruction manuals, and most of the units when they boot up, will tell you that they are only to be used as a guide and that the driver still has responsibility to pay attention and not be a tard.

  81. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Volvo Drivers == BMW Drivers == AUDI Drivers

    I think the "typical BMW driver" is a bit out of date. Most BMW's seem to be driven by old people nowadays having moved on from Volvos. Audi Drivers on the other hand....

  82. Colin Barfoot

    digitization errors

    I'm guessing it's here,,-2.11016&geocode=&hl=en&mra=mi&mrsp=0&sz=20&sll=53.704359,-2.109937&sspn=0.000391,0.001207&ie=UTF8&ll=53.704456,-2.110153&spn=0.000391,0.001207&t=h&z=20

    And indeed google shows it to be a lane. It's a fair bet he was driving too fast in spite of the state of the road. If he had been following google's directions he would have been running down sheep.

    The hills are alive with the sound of Beamers. la la laa

  83. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge

    I blame the government

    And their failure to put stop signs along the periphery of this pleasant land.

    It's okay people laughing at Mr Twatdangle but just imagine if this cliff had been over a beach and this unfortunate sod had driven over the edge and killed some children.

    And what about when ( not if, but when ) those bastard beardy-terrorist types hack into SatNav Central and have us all driving over cliffs ? There could be hundreds of children killed on beaches below !

    And what if they have BMW drivers careering straight into nuclear power plants, reversing up and driving into them again ? The potential horror ! Thousands of children at risk !!

    Me; I'm not going out until this government WAKES UP and does something about this deadly threat.

  84. Anonymous Coward

    Clarkson was wrong

    the germans car satnav doesnt just go to poland...

  85. A J Stiles

    @ AC 16:00

    In my experience, *any* back-end-drive car, irrespective of who made it, is likely to be driven badly.

  86. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Equipment failure

    I specifically programmed all BMW satnavs to kill their owners. What went wrong and why is this person still alive?

  87. Paul


    Jones explained: "It [the satnav] kept insisting the path was a road, even as it was getting narrower and steeper. I just trusted it."

    Methinks he needs to rely on the satnav just a *little* bit less.

    Seriously, satnav says "road", your eyes say "uh, no, it's not". Which should you believe?

    This just shows how successfully we've been conditioned to accept what we're told, ask no questions and for God's sake under no circumstances should you think, or use your initiative, ever.

  88. Stevie


    Satnav? More like SatNaff.

    Then again, I always think it a sad thing when an person demonstrates an IQ demonstrably lower than that of their personal electronics.

  89. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @all the holier-than-thou's

    I'll happily accept criticism about my single driving-through-the-country incident from anyone that has never flouted driving laws.

  90. Tom

    Only BMW drivers?

    I'd say at least half the drivers on our roads are morons, regardless of the car they drive.

    Mind you, probably half of the comments on this story are the hilarious "typical BMW driver" or similar - possible strong correlation?

  91. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    The satnav kept insisting it was a road....hardly likely to change it's mind is it?

    So that makes it right then does it?


  92. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    If he'd bothered to use his satnav properly and check the map mode, he'd have seen a f**king great blue patch on it, and the direction of travel straight for it.

    Ok, it's not an ordanance survey map with contour lines marked, the type of beach marked, but he could at least have easily identified that it wasn't land he was heading for!

  93. Anonymous Coward

    @Ross Fleming

    I, for one, welcome our sat-nav overlords. I only pray they don't mislead us like xenu.

  94. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I once had an incident with my TomTom trying to drive me down a one way street in Brighton.

    I didn't know Brighton at all, satnav told me to turn left at the traffic light controlled junction so I did,

    The road comprised two lanes, but only one lane occupied with cars, the other lane was empty, so it looked to me I could drive down the empty lane on the left, I hesitated and saw the no-entry signs. It was a one way street, with two lanes.

    I realised my error, fortunately the lights were on red for the oncoming traffic and the road was wide enough I could turn simply turn my way out of it.

    I also came across another map error in the TomTom maps for Brighton, so I learned, always, always keep good observation and continue to look for the road signs, don't rely on the satnav.

  95. Codge

    @ I blame the govmint


    My ideas on the matter.

    Ban Twat-nav while the car is moving.

    Print a route from the AA or similar, print it out. Read it!!! Check it!!! Take it with you, and refer to it if needed, and when safe to do so. Take a GOOD MAP. FFS. man, you call yourself a professional driver?

    Look where you're going! Use your brain!

    In all fairness to the wanker in question, he's not on the public highway, so therefore no charges under the RTA are possible. He might have been pissed though. But IANAL. And I wasn't there.

    Still a twunt though!

    The one with the map and compass in the pocket......

  96. Blubster

    What you people don't realise.....

    is that it's probably a `feature` of TomTom. It can detect whether you're driving a BMW and so takes the appropriate action. In this case, driving straight over a cliff.

    To make it even worse (or better depending on your point of view) it happened in Todmorden - a right shit-hole nobody in their right mind would want to visit anyway, so he could have lain at the bottom of said cliff without being discovered for months.

  97. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    That's a hill not a cliff

    and it looks like a single track road as well. Hmm bad media, as soon as you see the picture, and remember this is in Yorkshire ,it all looks quite plausible.

    Instead of the obvious police state we are in and hardening on, the police want to make an issue out of this?? Oh plank eye, greenhouse, and black kettle.

  98. Chris Martin

    Give the guy a break

    My initial reaction was the same as most others, that is w**ker in a Beamer. But looking at Colin Barfoots link I think we should give him a bit of slack. As a regular GPS user I have found it trying to take me down the odd unsuitable road / track when I have ventured off the major routes to get around jams. Watty Lane is proberley listed as a C road, even when it become a track. If it was not for that corner, he would have made it. Does Watty Lane have any warning signs to say not suitable for vehicles?

  99. the spectacularly refined chap


    "I rely on my satnav. I couldn't do without it for my job..."

    Of course, ten years ago when people didn't have satnavs nobody at all was ever sent to random parts of the country on a regular basis. After all, how on earth could they be expected to get there?

    Really, if you can't get from A to B without a satnav then you shouldn't be on the road. I'm glad they're looking at prosecuting him because people like this shouldn't have driving licences.

  100. Anonymous Coward

    Please, blaming satnav is lame

    And claiming that in rural areas this happens often... then clearly your satnav is retarded.

    TomTom 5 has never taken me down a footpath. A lane, yes, but never a footpath. And the lanes tend to show when they run out ahead of time. When you don't use the 3D display (which I don't), you don't get nasty little surprises.

    Jeez. Talk about being... well... you know.

  101. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @codge, paper maps

    "Print a route from the AA or similar, print it out. Read it!!! Check it!!! Take it with you, and refer to it if needed, and when safe to do so. Take a GOOD MAP. FFS. man, you call yourself a professional driver?"

    I've used both, maps, satnav, an hand written instructions sellotaped to the dash board.

    There is no doubt that satnav is easier and it is safer to use.

    Once the satnav has been programmed, it doesn't need to be touched again, unless planning a new route, so the argument that satnav is dangerous because people keep fiddling with it, shouldn't hold any water.

    All you need do is occasionally look down at the next instruction icon to ensure you turn the right way or come off at the right exit on the roundabout.

    I challenge anyone to prove that using paper maps is safer.

  102. Sillyfellow

    @ I blame the govmint

    no. don't blame the gvt. their response would be to:

    a. make some new laws making it illegal (of course being suspicious terrrrrrrrrist behaviour) to be parked out there for no good reason. and

    b. plant a cctv camera or 2 there to enforce said new law.

  103. Anonymous Coward

    Did no-one else spot...

    A West Yorkshire Police spokesman said: "Officers received a call at 11.18am on Sunday March 22 reporting that a BMW was hanging off the edge of a cliff off Bacup Road."

    If he'd only read his satnav instead of listening to it :P

  104. Damien Thorn

    Homicidal satnav.

    What if the satnav was trying to kill him?

    maybe the sat nav had enough of listening to him in the driving seat and thought - aha heres my chance throw this twat over the cliff.

    Maybe he touched the satnav inappropriately and the satnav took its revenge, or maybe he used another satnav -could jealousy be a motive?

  105. Codge

    @ Rotacyclic

    >I've used both, maps, satnav, an hand written instructions sellotaped to the dash board.

    Both implies two not three options, fail.

    > There is no doubt that satnav is easier and it is safer to use.

    Safer than having a mental route plan, involving reading signs?

    >Once the satnav has been programmed, it doesn't need to be touched again, unless planning >a new route, so the argument that satnav is dangerous because people keep fiddling with it, >shouldn't hold any water.

    I never said it did.

    >All you need do is occasionally look down at the next instruction icon to ensure you turn the >right way or come off at the right exit on the roundabout.

    Right exit as "advised" by the twat-nav? Fail 2

    >I challenge anyone to prove that using paper maps is safer.

    I challenge you to prove that it isn't!


  106. Anonymous Coward





  107. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Turing Test

    By Chris Posted Wednesday 25th March 2009 14:06 GMT

    I've just bought a BMW. From the comments here you'd think all BMW drivers are the antichrist.

    No...just the sort of people who actually fail the Turing Test...

  108. Andy Worth

    Re:@codge, paper maps

    "I challenge anyone to prove that using paper maps is safer."

    On a blanket level? Perhaps difficult if not impossible. I'd say it's true though ASSUMING that the driver stops to read the map rather than tries to navigate with the map blocking half of his window, and also that the driver has an ounce of common sense.

    In fact, people use a sat nav to replace a sense of direction, knowledge of their route and common sense so there are times when it does heighten the risk - i.e. when people rely on it completely blindly without using their own brain (as in with this particular story).

    "There is no doubt that satnav is easier and it is safer to use."

    I challenge you to prove the second part of that statement. You challenged everyone to try and prove something which is almost impossible to prove just after making the opposite claim without a shred of proof.

    Personally, I don't blame the sat nav for supposedly directing him over the edge, GPS is only accurate to a number of metres anyway. Most peoples "uh-oh" alarm bells would have started going off before they got as far as this guy did, and they would have stopped to check the visual display on their chosen sat nav device.

  109. Scott Wichall

    Hmmmm, lots of hate here

    Seems to be a lot of people here who hate BMW drivers. I presume you are all referring to the wankers (reps) in 320/520D cars who are slowly moving onto Audi's.

    I drive a proper petrol big 5 series....and I can assure all of you twats who are complaining about typical BMW drivers, that the indicators all work, quite correctly every time I change lane/direction. More than can be said for the idiots driving insignificant little shitboxes at 90mph down the motorway. I watch them all kicking each other in the balls every day while I sit tucked in behind the lorries in the left hand lane and have a quiet chuckle to myself.

    Oh, and the arrogant wankers who do not bother to acknowledge you when you have given way to them...just because you are driving a BMW. Cocks.

    They say people with big cars have small why is it then that all the little shitboxes are the ones screaming around everywhere...clearly trying to prove something or make up for something lacking in the trouser department?


    And there is no way on gods green earth he would have been able to reverse that BM back up there. People do rely on Sat Nav too much, but that looks like the sort of typical rural non classified road/track that a Sat Nav would send you along.

    Personally, I write down directions, take a map and only use the Sat Nav for emergencies!

  110. Dr Patrick J R Harkin

    Stop picking on the poor driver!

    If he spent time looking out of the window, he wouldn't be able to send texts!

  111. MJI Silver badge

    AJ Stiles @ 17:18

    Hmm people who like driving tend towards RWD, personally I hate driving wrong wheel drive cars., they do not feel right on the road, asking a road wheel to steer and drive is asking a lot, better the two are seperated.

    From the Google map it does look like a road.

    I expect he tried reversing out but the tyres would not grip.

    Here is some advice.

    1) Carry a map as well

    2) If you get in this position let the air out of the driving wheels - gives more traction on loose ground, hen pump them up when back on the metalled road.

  112. Booty003
    Thumb Up


    Fuckin LOVE IT.


  113. VulcanV5
    Dead Vulture

    Bound to happen. . .

    Put a story like this on El Reg and it's inevitable that poster after poster will follow each other down Cliche Lane.

    Just think: in pre-satnav days, those same posters would be tailgating each other along the route of what-d'you-expect-of-Volvo-drivers-with-daylight-running-lights.

    It's not only in the world of motoring that a few more arrests should be made of twats incapable of displaying an original thought.

  114. Peter Kay

    'if not for the corner he would have made it'

    Bollocks. The pictures from the Mail clearly show lots of rocks that you'd need a 4x4 to clear. No-one with any sense should have gone down a road like that, especially in daylight.

    There are several 'roads' near me that are clearly marked on Google Maps, but are unsuitable for anything except a landrover or a mountain bike.

    Even in central Manchester (and no doubt London), there are also 'roads' that technically it's probably possible to get a smart car down, but you'd be well advised not to try anything else.

    If it doesn't look right, it isn't. Chuck away the satnav and pull out the road atlas.

    Also, if you don't know the area, don't use B roads - even if it looks like you'd save time.

  115. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Ever heard of stopping distances?? (maybe in say a driving test?)

    You should never drive so that you cannot see your stopping distance!

    AND DOUBLE that on a Single track road! (the opposing driver cant stop in the same space as you!)


  116. tim


    Sea? You mean that blue thing at least 30 miles away?

  117. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So where is Gauxholme

    Anyone know if Gauxholme actually exists - I can't find it on multimap.

  118. Anonymous Coward

    @ So where is Gauxholme

    In Multimap first find.. "watty lane, todmorden" then click on the OS Map view, top left of the map and hey presto!

  119. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    As the ads used to say.

    Man and machine in perfect harmony i.e (BMW + Thicko driver)

    Posted anonymously as my neighbour is a BMW driver and he's bigger than me. ('though doubt if he reads the reg).

  120. Anonymous Coward

    Downhill MTB route

    Watty Lane where he came unstuck IS an adopted highway, but might actually be no more than a public bridleway. In any case you'd have to be an idiot to do what he did. He had a hundred metres or so of flat grassy track when he should have realised it wasn't such a good idea, then a long rocky descent beside a precipitous edge (no doubt with rising level of panic) before getting stuck on a tight bend.

    Youtube has some good videos of riders hurtling down Watty Lane.

    Google Maps (and sat nav) routes you down quite a few public bridleways in this part of west yorkshire

  121. BigSanta

    You're wrong

    Like the delivery driver who phoned me up to say he was outside my house with my item,and couldn't get no answer at the front and my dog was stopping him from going the back way.

    Telling him i have no dog,no back way "cul de sac and all that"and the fact that i'm looking out my door and telling him he's not there ,he's obviously at the wrong address,but armed with this information he still wouldn't beleive me, as "the sat nav told him he was at the right address"!

    10 or so minutes later uncle buck turned up,using MY DIRECTIONS of course.


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