On the night of July 12, a 28-year-old man was distracted playing “Pokémon Go” when he drove off the road and crashed into a tree, according to investigators.
The driver, Steven Cary, sustained only minor injuries, but his vehicle was totaled. It is likely that he will be cited for the single vehicle crash.
Recently released in July, “Pokémon Go” has taken the world by storm. In this incredibly popular augmented reality game, players are encouraged to go outside and explore their neighborhood while collecting fictional creatures with special powers called Pokémon. The game utilizes the phone’s camera to transpose Pokémon in the real world. In order to catch a Pokémon, players must “look” at it through their cameras.
The problem is that many players are keeping their eyes glued to their phones and not paying attention to their surroundings. There have already been numerous reported incidents of people tripping, falling into ditches, and generally putting themselves in danger while trying to hunt down an elusive rare Pokémon. Even worse, some especially ardent players are catching Pokémon while behind the wheel. The implications of this particularly shortsighted activity are clearly bad for the general public. It is just as much a form of distracted driving as texting while driving.
“There is absolutely no reason a player should risk his or her life – and the lives of others – over an imaginary yellow mouse,” said a representative of Wilshire Law Firm. “Never, ever play while driving a car or bicycle. And if you’re hunting on foot, please look up from your phone regularly for potential hazards.”