A new study claims that Pokémon Go, the still popular augmented reality mobile game, may have been responsible for more than 145,000 traffic accidents across the United States in the first five months after the game’s release. Researchers analyzed crash statistics from Tippecanoe County in Indiana and extrapolated the uncovered data to span the entire country. The results of the research are raising questions about distracted driving in the smartphone age.
Traffic fatalities had been on the decline for several years before unexpectedly spiking in 2011. Many experts believe the sudden trend reversal is directly linked to the prevalence of smart phones. The Pokémon Go study showed that the risk of an auto accident increased 26.5% near a Pokéstop, where players are more likely to be looking at their phone to receive in-game bonuses. Pokémon Go is not the only reason people look at their phones while driving or walking, but due the game’s popularity, the increased risk was significant. With a population of about 186,000 people, Tippecanoe County reported 31 injuries and two deaths associated with the game.
Distracted driving is a serious concern. For your safety and the safety of others, please put down the phone while driving! If you have been injured in a car accident, contact the Law Offices of Scott Warmuth at 888-517-9888 today for a free consultation.