Posts Tagged ‘routine stop’

The United States Park Police vs. the Google Maps Car in San Francisco’s Presidio

Monday, June 16th, 2008

The Presidio of San Francisco, on the northern waterfront to the left of the newly upscale Ghirardelli Square, hasn’t seen this much action since they filmed The Presidio, starring Sean Connery. It appears that a mounted member of the United States Park Police briefly detained a Google Maps camera car for some sort of driving infraction this morning. Oh noes! Don’t impede this car – it’s gone to some interesting places. It’s not scary at all, right?

So the photo below shows how the magic of Google Street View happens – you can see their method all laid out. In this case, Google is using a brand-spanking-new Toyota Prius gas-electric hybrid (wouldn’t a 50-state VW Jetta TDI diesel get better mileage?) and a rather tall metal mast with mad cameras, GPSes and SICK laser range finders. Click to expand:

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Courtesy of damianspain of the San Francisco Bay area. Thanks Damian! Check out his flickrstream for lots of great shots of San Francisco, including a rare blue sky at the North Beach Festival.

(Normally, the Presidio is a quiet place, except for people feuding over the location of the new CAMP museum and the occasional coyote attack. And Hooverball - the kids these days make all sorts of noise throwing their old school medicine balls around.)

Keep up the good work, Google Street View drivers. Just make sure to watch out for The Man (as well as all those sexy pedestrians trying to catch your attention).

[Update: National Park Service employee and Commenter #67 Motorcop_2000 disputes any account that has the Googler getting a ticket. MC_2K indicates that this driver merely got lost and was trying to get "back to the Avenues" (meaning the Richmond or the Sunset districts). Bad driving and Toyota Priuseses seem to go together, so this story rings true.]