Tonight, me and my partner are rewatching Jurassic Park for the third time this year and we started wondering about Nedry's journey to the East Docks.


  1. Why DID Nedry turn the other safety systems off? Wouldn't simply overriding the main gate security be enough?

  2. As he hurries through the park, he loses control of the car and rams in to a road sign showing the way to the East Docks. The arrow is then turned, causing him to lose his direction.Which way should he have turned to get to the East Docks?

  3. Why did he have to go through the actual park to get to the docks? (If the answer to that is that no other route existed, is there a reason for this?)

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    i assume the east docks where to the east, however i could be mistaken, it could have been north, south , or west as well.
    – Himarm
    Commented Dec 12, 2014 at 22:05
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    Why would Nedry need signs to know the routes, hadn't he been on the island setting up the security for a long time?
    – Oldcat
    Commented Dec 12, 2014 at 22:11
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    @Oldcat: Nedry was a programmer. He set up the computer systems, but was unlikely to have actually been in the field setting things up. He would have maybe picked/designed hardware, but the park's engineers would have done the actual installation, especially outside of the Admin buildings.
    – Jeff
    Commented Dec 13, 2014 at 2:59
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    Nedry.... or Nerdy?
    – Petersaber
    Commented Jul 8, 2015 at 6:50
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    Because he's a schmuck
    – Valorum
    Commented Aug 11, 2017 at 9:22

3 Answers 3


Why did Nedry shut off the fences?

The novel covers your first point. In order to gain unfettered access to the cryo-room so that he could steal the embryos, Nedry needed to shut down all of the security.

“That's the least of it,” Arnold said. “When you turn off the security, you turn off all the peripheral fences as well.” “The fences?” Muldoon said. “The electrical fences,” Arnold said. “They're off, all over the island.”

Note that he could have gotten off the island whenever he wanted (he wasn't a prisoner), but he wanted to do it in a way that offer plausible deniability that it wasn't him that stole the DNA samples. They might suspect him of taking the samples but they'd have no outright proof

Which way should he have gone?

We know that his destination was the East Docks (in the film, to meet the ferry and in the book to meet Dodgson's boat) and we know that he took a wrong turn and ended up being killed by a Dilophosaurus. On the strength of that, I've used the original 'screen-used' tour map prop to show his likely proposed route and likely accidental route.

enter image description here

For the record, in the movie the arrow to the docks originally pointed upwards shot immediately before but was then pointing to the left in the very next shot, before his car hit the signpost. Under the circumstance, I think we can peg this down to a production error.

Why did he have to go through the park?

Because the visitor centre is on the West side of the island and the docks are on the East side of the island. In order to travel between these, you need to cross the park however under normal circumstances you'd only travel alongside enclosures containing relatively benign dinos such as the Stegosaurus, Gallimus and Brachiosaurus.

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    A good follow-up question would be, why did he use the jeep to travel along the visitor road when the main road would have taken him directly to his destination in half the time.
    – Valorum
    Commented Dec 12, 2014 at 22:40
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    Dr. Grant and his tour group were on the main road.
    – Joe L.
    Commented Dec 12, 2014 at 22:59
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    In the film, the sign points to the left before he hits it. I've no explanation for that other than that it was a production error. There's nowhere on the map that would make sense
    – Valorum
    Commented Dec 12, 2014 at 23:02
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    In the book at least, Nedry's plan was not to escape with the embryos, but to quickly drop them off at Dodgson's boat unnoticed. "The whole idea behind the plan was that he could drive to the east dock, drop off the embryos, and be back in a few minutes, before anyone noticed." Presumably he also shut off security so there would be no evidence, and so he could take a much faster route to the docks. If he could make it also look like there were no gaps in time in security videos etc, then he would perfectly avoid suspicion.
    – Kai
    Commented Dec 13, 2014 at 0:02
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    @Kai - A very good point. I presumed that the OP had seen the films but not read the book.
    – Valorum
    Commented Dec 13, 2014 at 0:03

Nedry was not planning to leave. He was planning to make it to the east dock, drop off the embryos at the dock, and return. He figured he would be back so quickly that no one would miss him.

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    @Valorum do you mean that Nedry was planning on leaving the island in the book? Because the scene with Dodgson makes it clear that he intends to hand over the embryos to Dodgson man on the boat. "That's up tp your guy on the boat."
    – SQB
    Commented Jun 21, 2018 at 11:36

The boat was leaving sooner due to the storm. His quickest route was through the park and perhaps he had to shut the fences down to gain access to this route

  • 2
    Hi, welcome to the site. You could improve this answer by editing it to include one or more relevant quotes. Commented Jan 5, 2022 at 2:28

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