A recent study conducted by two Purdue University economists illustrated the impact Pokémon Go, a popular gaming app, had on the number of car accidents in the United States. In the app, players use their smartphone cameras to view three-dimensional graphics of fictional monsters against real world backgrounds using their phones’ GPS capabilities. The goal is to catch the monsters and build their skills at Pokémon gyms, designated locations where users can battle their monsters against others. In the study, the researchers found that Pokémon gyms and Pokestops, another type of designated location in the game, had unusually high levels of collisions and injuries.
Pokémon Go Car Accident Statistics
In their research, the economists studied one county. The data showed the following:
During the 148-day period, they found 286 more car accidents occurred in the area than during the same period the previous year
37 injuries were attributed to Pokémon Go
Two fatalities could be attributed to the app
In total, $500,000 in damages could be definitively tied to the app
Applying those statistics to the nation as a whole, the researched extrapolated that Pokémon Go caused an increase of more than 140,000 car accidents, 250 fatalities, and up to $7 billion in damages.
Distracted Driving is Dangerous for All Parties
Using a cell phone while driving is one of the most dangerous things a driver can do. In many ways, distracted driving is more dangerous than drunk driving. When a driver is under the influence of alcohol, their judgment and perception are impaired, making it difficult to safely operate a vehicle. When a driver is distracted, their eyes are off the road and their hands are off the steering wheel, meaning they momentarily cede all control of their vehicle.
Certain Pokémon characters are easier to find in the game than others, which led players to physically roam around their neighborhoods, cities, and new areas in search of Pokémon. When reports of collisions caused by drivers using the app began to arise, the game’s developer released an update that made it impossible to play the game while traveling above certain speed limits. Drivers are not the only ones who increase their risk of causing an accident by playing Pokémon Go. Pedestrians can also inadvertently cause accidents by walking into high traffic areas or failing to see an oncoming vehicle. There have also been reports of accidents involving Pokémon Go players on bicycles and similar modes of transportation.
Cherry Hill Car Accident Lawyers at DiTomaso Law Help Victims of Distracted Driving Accidents Claim CompensationWhen an individual is injured in a collision with a distracted driver, they can face steep financial damages. If you or someone you know was involved in a car accident due to the negligence of another driver, speak with a Cherry Hill car accident lawyer at DiTomaso Law to learn more about your rights and legal options. Fill out our online form or call us at 856-414-0010 to schedule your initial consultation with us. Our office is in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, and we work with clients from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and southern New Jersey.