By Attorney Bobby Warner
The Associated Press is reporting that a rash of injuries related to people playing Pokémon Go has swept the nation.
The augmented reality populates the real world’s cities and parks with creatures from Nintendo’s best-selling Pokémon games using Google Maps data. Players keep the app open as they navigate a mini-map display of the current location.
Once you encounter a Pokémon, tapping on it opens another screen where the creature stands or flies in place as you throw Pokeballs at it in order to catch it and add it to your collection.
The people playing this game have gotten themselves injured by running into objects or people, walking into traffic and even playing the game while driving.
It’s not that tough to play Pokémon Go with also making a trip to the emergency room. Here are a few tips to keep people safe while playing:
1. Don’t play and drive – while this seems like a no-brainer, believe it or not, it happened. When you are in your vehicle, always keep your attention focused on the road and avoid anything that may distract your attention. The game can wait until you are out of your car and in safe area to play. Don’t be this guy:
You should also avoid riding your bike or skateboarding while playing.
2. When you’ve spotted a creature, get out of the way – One of the game’s biggest draws is the augmented reality feature. When activated, the game uses your phone’s camera to place Pokémon in the environment around you. Once you spot the creature and enter the capture screen, that Pokémon isn’t going anywhere. Be considerate of those around you who aren’t playing the game and are trying to get around. Simply find a bench or a place out of the way to continue to play.
3. Turn off the augmented reality feature – just as people are driving and playing, pedestrians are also walking and playing and not paying attention to their surrounding. This has led people to running into stop signs and even oncoming traffic. By turning off the augmented reality feature your phone screen will be replaced with a display of a grassy field with the creature positioned in the center. This makes it easier to catch the Pokémon and makes it unnecessary to try and divide your attention between the screen and your surroundings.
Now that you know what not to do when playing Pokémon Go, set forth , stay safe and catch them all!