It was only a matter of time.
“Pokemon Go” is causing car crashes as the the augmented reality phenomenon – one of the most popular smartphone games of all time – finds its way into the hands of distracted drivers.
[Read about the Best Cars for Playing Pokemon Go]
The game encourages people to walk around to collect 151 Pokemon and is based off the card game and hand-held Nintendo games of the 90s.
However, much like texting and driving, “Pokemon Go” and driving is becoming a problem as gamers try to “catch ‘em all.”
The craze has even prompted a slew of hoax stories, including one about a massive pile-up started by a distracted driver looking for Pikachu.
Here are three times the game has actually contributed to real world accidents:
- In New York, a man was driving while playing the game when he got distracted, drove off the road, and slammed into a tree. He was taken to a hospital with minor injuries.
- A 15-year-old Pennsylvania girl was hit by a car as she was walked onto a busy highway while paying attention to her phone instead of oncoming traffic. The girl suffered an injured collarbone and foot as well some bruising.
- Two Canadian police officers were injured when two people backed into their cruiser. The two people reportedly got out of the car and immediately said, “I’m sorry, I was playing ‘Pokemon Go.’”
While it wasn’t an accident, cars were stopped earlier last week as a rare Pokemon called “Vaporeon” was released near Central Park, and people rushed to the area to try and catch it. Videos showed one person leaving their car parked on the road.
“Pokemon Go” isn’t all negative though when it comes to cars. According to WPXI 11 in Pittsburgh, a man who was walking around playing Pokemon Go happened upon a car accident and helped save the victim's life after their car caught on fire..
And there is good news for those parents who are concerned about their teens playing while driving.
[Here Are 5 Ways To Keep Your Teen Safe While Driving]
Cellcontrol, a company based out of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, has created DriverID, a $129 device that blocks teens from using apps like "Pokemon Go" while driving.
Numerous police departments have issued warnings about playing “Pokemon Go” while driving.
However, much like texting and driving, "Pokemon Go" and driving is becoming a problem as gamers try to "catch 'em all."