Doug Stanglin, USA TODAY
Police in the Australian town of Mildura are warning drivers to be careful when using the new mapping system on the Apple iPhone after having to rescue several motorists sent by mistake to a national park wilderness 40 miles away.
"Some of the motorists located by police have been stranded for up to 24 hours without food or water and have walked long distances through dangerous terrain to get phone reception," the police department said in a statement, according to the official Victoria police website.
Apple's maps app was released in late September as part of the iOS 6 system.
The department said tests confirmed that the mapping system lists the town in the middle of the Murray Sunset National Park, about 40 miles from the actual location.
Police say they are "extremely concerned" because there is no water supply in the park and temperatures can hit 114 degrees.
Police say they have have contacted Apple regarding the issue "and hope the matter is rectified promptly to ensure the safety of motorists traveling to Mildura."
Australia's ABC News quotes one traveler, Victoria Wake, as saying she and her partner traveling from Adelaide to Mildura for a wedding two weeks ago got lost in the wilderness for five hours without food or water after they blew a tire and got bogged down.
"We had the shelter of the car, but obviously you don't want to keep running the car and putting the air conditioner on because you don't know how long you're going to be there," Wake said. "So five hours in the heat working to try to get your car out was scary."
Mildura, with a population of around 30,000 people, is 330 miles northwest of Melbourne in the southeastern state of Victoria.
Bloomberg reported that Apple CEO Tim Cook has apologized to customers over the glitch in the mapping. The news agency also reported that the bungled introduction of the new mapping features contributed to the ouster of Apple's mobile-software chief in October.