The incredibly popular Pokemon Go smartphone game nearly claimed its first life Tuesday night after a driver in upstate New York swerved off the road and hit a tree while trying to catch Pokemon, police said.
According to Syracuse.com, an unidentified 28-year-old man was trying to catch Pokemon on his phone at about 10:45 p.m. when he got distracted and veered off the roadway and crashed into a tree.
Auburn police said the man wasn’t seriously injured, despite the front of his car being crumpled. The man admitted to police that he was playing Pokemon Go.
Auburn Police Chief Shawn Butler said that the man’s name will be released once the investigation is complete. Syrause.com reported that traffic tickets are pending.
Police said in a statement that drivers must use common sense when playing the game and offered some advice to Pokemon hunters.
· Don’t play the game while driving a car or bicycle.
· Don’t trespass on private property just to “catch” a Pokemon.
· Avoid staring down at your phone and be aware of hazards like roadways, drop-offs and waterways.
· Be cautious of who you share your location with.
· Don’t travel alone.
Pokemon has become a wildly popular game and has already drawn some controversy. A number of historical sites have already asked people to not play the game while visiting, deeming it in appropriate.