Pokémon NO: Push to stop drivers from using popular app

Recent crashes serve as wake-up call

AAA is urging drivers not to use Pokémon Go behind the wheel because it could lead to potentially deadly consequences.

This week’s crashes in New York and Pennsylvania should serve as a wake-up call for drivers to focus on the task of driving and not to be distracted.

“Safe driving involves a high level of concentration and skill,” said Gary Bubar, Traffic Safety and Public Affairs Specialist, AAA Michigan. The last thing drivers need is a virtual reality distraction when they are behind the wheel.”

Distracted driving is very dangerous. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that at least 3,000 deaths per year involve distracted driving, though the true number is likely far higher. The following statistics help put the dangers of distracted driving into context:

Taking your eyes off the road for more than two seconds doubles your risk of a crash.

When driving 55 miles per hour, five seconds with eyes off the road is equivalent to driving the length of a football field blindfolded.

Distraction is a factor in nearly 6 out of 10 moderate-to-severe teen crashes.

“Driving requires your full attention, and putting away your phone until you reach your destination could save your life,” continued Bubar. “Pedestrians playing the game also should be aware so that they do not cross a busy intersection while distracted.”

Crashes are not the only risks affecting drivers. Drivers playing Pokémon Go could also face jail time and fines. Michigan has laws against reckless driving. Motorists are likely to be pulled over by law enforcement if they are a threat on the road.


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