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Sat-nav positioning on windscreens a 'safety threat'

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Motoring assistance firm GEM is claiming 'thoughtless positioning' of sat nav devices on windscreens is posing a 'huge threat to road safety'.

According to the company, today’s large screen devices positioned in the middle of a car windscreen mean a potentially lethal reduction in driver visibility, especially on left hand bends and at junctions.

GEM chief executive David Williams said: “Sat nav devices are great for relieving a lot of motoring stress. But if in the process you’re obscuring a vast swathe of your field of view, then you are taking a huge risk.

“A typical large screen sat nav device measuring nearly seven inches (17cm) wide by four inches (10.48cm) high has the potential to cause significant restrictions to a driver’s field of view, especially if it’s mounted in the centre of the windscreen below a large rear view mirror.

“A small screen device may seem to be only a minor obstruction from inside the car. However, it has the potential to hide a much larger area outside the car, depending on where you sit and the distance you are from it.

“Placing a sat nav right in the centre of the windscreen will block most of your nearside view, and will mean you miss all the hazards that might be there. This is particularly dangerous on left hand bends, at junctions and crossings, and in any locations where you may share the road space with cyclists and pedestrians.”

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  • Scott - 10/05/2016 10:34

    Similarly, we encountered problems with a rear view camera which was positioned above the driver, in the upper part of the windscreen. A routine inspection pointed out it was obscuring view, and therefore ilegal. I agree with the Sat Nav positioning also. If a large stone chip in the windscreen can fail an MOT, and therefore be the vehicle be unroadworthy, a larger Sat Nav is definitely obscuring the drivers view.

  • bob the engineer - 10/05/2016 10:51

    Totally agree! absolute pet hate of mine as a parent... I often see something like a mini with small windscreen and a tall driver with a 6" sat nav right in the middle of the windscreen, easily a 'child sized' dead spot. I have mine tucked in the bottom right corner virtually resting on the dash and it causes no obstructions. Its also common to see phones stuck to windscreens, I know some use them as sat navs or music players, but often you see both and the phone is a bad idea because its guaranteed people will be tempted to read or even send messages. I would ideally like to see the police able to enforce a clear view with penalties. But as they are largely ineffective in controlling blatant handheld use, clear-from-a-mile-away illegal number plates and safety hindering tinted front windows I won't be holding my breath!

  • Busterrabbit - 10/05/2016 11:26

    Don't forget the clowns using 8" and 10" tablets as sat-nav units, absolutely crazy!

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