CHUNCHEON, South Korea, Feb. 1 (Korea Bizwire) – There is no need for an explanation – one should not play Pokémon GO while behind the wheel.
Korea is going through the same troubles that other countries, which launched the AR game six months earlier, struggled with – trespassing and driving while playing – with growing concerns for potentially more serious misconduct.
The Gangwon Provincial Police Agency said Wednesday that it is reinforcing its crackdown on drivers playing Pokémon GO while on the road.
Currently, playing videogames while driving is a violation of the Road Traffic Act that results in 60,000 won ($51.93) in fines and 15 penalty points (40 results in license suspension).
According to the agency, it came across a male driver in his 30s in Taebaek on January 28 who was driving while using his smartphone. Upon pulling over the vehicle, officers discovered that he was playing Pokémon GO, and furthermore, he didn’t even have a driver’s license.
No car accidents have yet taken place as a result of playing the game while driving.
But thousands of traffic accidents and crimes, with some resulting in death, have taken place around the world, including a car accident in Japan that killed 39-year-old woman last year, putting South Korean law enforcement officials on high alert.
“Players should refrain from playing the game when walking or crossing a cross walk,” said an agency official. “We advise the public to not enter dangerous areas, including the ocean and the mountains.”
In Busan, officials at the United Nations Memorial Cemetery and the Citizens Park had to boost security after observing a handful of Pokémon hunters trespassing after official hours.
Pokémon GO was launched in Korea on January 24, recording an estimated 7.5 million downloads in its first week.
By Joseph Shin (firstname.lastname@example.org)