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Published On: Sun, Aug 6th, 2017

Truck driver runs over two women, killing one, while playing Pokmon Go

Flowers are laid in Tokushima, Japan, on Aug. 24, 2016, near the scene where a passerby was killed in the first fatal accident in the country linked to a person playing the popular augmented-reality game "Pokemon Go" while driving.
Image: Kyodo via AP Images

When you start up Pokmon Go, you get a warning that you should always be aware of your surroundings while playing the game. Ignoring this warning, especially if you're behind the wheel, can have dire consequences, as shown by the case of a Japanese truck driver who hit two women, killing one and injuring another.

According to Reuters, the man admitted he was distracted by the game while driving. He was arrested for negligent driving Wednesday.

CNN reports the driver to be a 39-year-old farmer, while one of the victims, a woman in her early 70s, died after suffering a spinal injury. The other woman has been hospitalized and her injuries are described as severe.

A spokesman for the game's developer, the San Francisco-based Niantic, told Reuters the game shows an additional warning if it detects the player is going too fast, which might indicate he or she is driving. Neither Niantic nor Nintendo, which partly owns the intellectual rights for the Pokmon franchise, would say whether they plan to implement additional safety measures into the game.

This was the first Pokmon Go-related death in Japan, where the game is immensely popular, but it's not the first accident in the country. Mere hours after the game debuted in Japan in July, a student fell and injured his head while playing the game. Japanese authorities launched a safety campaign even before the game's launch, sharing a poster describing how players can stay safe while playing the game.

There's been a number of Pokmon Go-related accidents in other countries as well. Earlier this week, a rare Pokmon caused a stampede in Taiwan, and a similar rush happened in New York's Central Park in July.

The augmented reality mobile game requires players to search real-life locations in order to "catch" the game's monsters. It's been an enormous hit, quickly reaching the status of the largest mobile game ever in the U.S. and elsewhere, but lately the craze has been slowing down somewhat.

Read more: http://mashable.com/2016/08/25/japan-truck-driver-pokemon-go-death/

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Truck driver runs over two women, killing one, while playing Pokmon Go