When the United States military developed and implemented a space-based satellite system, they probably never imagined the doors they were opening for novices who love gadgets!

Global Positioning Systems enhance safety for individuals, businesses, and service-based entities alike by orbiting Earth and sending information to GPS receivers owned by various users.

Cell phones have the capabilities of GPS, and allow persons to reach their destinations safely by furnishing maps and voice-activated instructions.  So you can now take a walk, drive your car, or map out a future trip by typing in the address you are looking for.  GPS devices that are already installed in cars help drivers know what to anticipate in regard to traffic conditions, road conditions, etc.  Drivers should program their GPS before they start their car, as watching the GPS rather than the road can be very dangerous.  They must be used in a way that enhances driving abilities.  Voice-activation guides the driver turn by turn, allowing the driver to keep their eyes on the road.  If a turn is missed, the system will give instructions on how to get back on the right track.

Incorporation of GPS with mobile phones provides a comprehensive safety net.  They give positional information on persons with mobile phones and in vehicles that may be in an emergency situation and unable to use their phone.  Public safety services depend on GPS for location and timing capabilities in their life-saving missions.

If you have teen-agers, never fear, there are GPS monitors that can locate them, as well as family members who are disabled, elderly, or have medical conditions.  Help buttons are also featured in the systems.  Another stress reducing feature of GPS is the fear of getting lost.
Your route is calculated before you leave home, and you will have no more maps to fool with.

Another service that GPS provides is tracking of fleet vehicles.  With this type of system, managers have all kinds of information available to them:

  • Constant location of all vehicles;
  • How many stops vehicles make, and for how long;
  • Speed being driven;
  • Distance driven;
  • Hours of service in each vehicle;
  • Accurate reporting and log-keeping.

It may seem to some that this is spying; however, it actually improves safety for employees.  Time and money savings can result from information gathered by these systems.

With all the technology we are afforded, we must not allow these systems to distract us.  Pay attention to the road, not the screen.  In this modern age of “instant everything”: dvd players, cell phones or other devices that tempt us to check them out, wait until you stop the car. Watch the road, not the gadgets!