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Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Apple Maps Glitch Leads Strangers to (and Through) Missouri Man's Property

Posted By on Tue, Jan 9, 2018 at 12:22 PM

Charles Lefarth of Jefferson County is facing a dilemma, with a constant stream of strangers visiting his property — and it's all because of a problem with Apple Maps.

According to KSDK, Apple Maps shows Lefarth's yard as a way to get to Amberleigh Woods, a subdivision behind his home. But his residence is far from providing easy access: thick woods, a pond and no roads stand between Amberleigh Woods and Lefarth's home, which is located on a high hill.

As a result, unknown cars approach Lefarth's property at all hours of the day — even pulling about twelve feet into the yard, Lefarth told KSDK.

Lefarth's torment started last year, when the final section of the subdivision behind his house was completed. Since then, Lefarth says, Apple Maps has been rerouting drivers to park at his house and then trek through his property to get to the subdivision.

"They're constantly looking for homes that are up over the hill that were put in the subdivision. Half of them pull up into the yard, destroy it. I have to redo it," Lefarth told the TV station.

And yard damage isn't the only burden the glitch has caused.

"One night I had four cars come up here in about one hour," Lefarth told KSDK. "But what concerned me is when I had a state trooper here looking for a place."

Although the local fire chief assured Lefarth that the department doesn't use Apple Maps, KSDK says Lefarth still worries about the repercussions the glitch could cause in an emergency. 

"I don't want an ambulance coming here for an emergency over there because it's going to delay them five minutes," Lefarth said.

KSDK contacted Apple but had yet to hear back.

Apple allows users to report problems with any given location. But it's not clear how many complaints it needs to realize it's got an error on its hands — and how fast it then moves to address them. In a previous iteration of Apple Maps, the directions for getting to Dulles Airport were bad enough to potentially send drivers into the path of a 747, as CNN reported at the time. Which maybe puts the problems in Jefferson County in perspective?

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