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GPS causes trouble for trucks

Caitlin Rickard crickard@lebanondemocrat.com • Dec 15, 2015 at 2:40 PM

GPS problems have caused some issues with trucks attempting to reach the new Starbucks facility just off State Route 840 on Commerce Way in Lebanon.

Instead of directing them to Commerce Way, trucks are sent 20 miles out of the way to a rural area west of Lebanon to Commerce Road.

“It’s been a major problem for us,” Wilson County Sheriff Robert Bryan said.

Since the Starbucks center is new to the county, the GPS hasn’t had time to catch up, as Commerce Way is not currently in any databases.

“It’s just the nature of the beast,” Sheriff’s Lt. Bob Harrison said. “I’m not going to say it’s a glitch in the GPS, but when you add a new street it takes a while to get it into the mapping systems.”

Bryan said the delay in GPS has already caused issues.

“If a GPS says turn left, people turn left,” Bryan said. “A majority of these tractor trailers are entering the address for the Starbucks distribution center as Commerce Way, but it takes them to a rural area of the county to where we have a Commerce Road. It’s narrow, county roads and it’s dangerous for these large trucks.”

So far, Harrison said the trucks are stirring up a ruckus out in the county.

“We’ve got a couple dozen 18-wheelers a day that are getting stuck and just causing general confusion,” Harrison said.

According to Bryan, not only are the dangers of the large trucks on narrow roads daunting, but the situation has also taken a lot of manpower.

“It’s got me concerned as far as tractor trailers on roads, but it’s also tying up manpower with all the calls we’ve been getting of trucks getting stuck and tearing up property,” Bryan said. “The major concern from us is for the dangers plus manpower used that has to keep responding out there.”

On Tuesday alone Bryan said the department received four calls.

“We’ve been in contact with Starbucks and are doing everything we can to correct this,” Bryan said. “I think they’ve been in contact with their drivers and GPS and Google Maps people to hopefully fix that.

“It’s a work in progress. You can’t push a button and fix it, but we’re exploring all the possibilities of anything we can do.”

So far, Bryan said signs were posted to warn truckers not to attempt the narrow roads.

“It’s a rural area out there. They can get all the coffee they want, but it won’t be from Starbucks,” Bryan said.

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