N.J. Man In A Jam, After Illegal GPS Device Interferes With Newark Liberty Operations
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NEWARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – A New Jersey man wanted to hide his movements from his boss. He ended up interfering with operations at a busy airport instead.
Now he’s facing a massive fine, CBS 2’s Tony Aiello reported Friday.
Limo drivers say it’s no big deal — their employer put GPS trackers in their vehicles.
“[I have] nothing to hide from my dispatcher,” driver Catherine Fitzgibbons said.
“I’m driving their vehicle. They should know where I’m at 24/7, absolutely,” Will Smith added.
But a man who works for an engineering company obviously felt differently. Gary Bojczak admitted buying an illegal GPS jammer to thwart the tracking device in his company vehicle, Aiello reported.
The problem was his work took him near Newark Liberty Airport, and his GPS jammer, which available online for less than $100, interfered with a new GPS-based guidance system called Smartpath being tested at the airport.
Federal agents tracked the jamming signal to Bojczak’s truck and this week hit him with a big fine — $32,000.
“It’s a very significant issue,” attorney and aviation expert Brian Alexander told Aiello.
Alexander said the Federal Aviation Administration is worried and is pushing to expand the use of GPS in aircraft. He said inexpensive jammers could cause big problems.
“To the extent these devices are out there and illegal, they have to send a message and pursue those jammers to make sure that they’re not anywhere near the airports, not being used at the airports,” Alexander said.
The jamming incident cost Bojczak his job at Tilcon. The company said “safety is paramount — the company places a high value on the trust established with customers and neighbors. Jeopardizing that trust is unacceptable.”
No one was endangered during the GPS jamming incident, which happened during a test of the airport’s new system, Aiello reported.
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