Lansing urges Pokemon Go players to stay safe

Posted at 11:09 AM, Jul 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-17 11:09:52-04

While you may want to find that rare Pokemon, it's important to realize what's going on around them. Instances across the US have seen car accidents, pedestrians being hit by moving vehicles, and cases of trespassing. But Lansing hasn't had any of those issues so far.

"We haven't come across any incidents at this time, but let me tell you that is changing on a daily basis," says Lansing Police Department Chief Michael Yankowski.

That's because there are players who aren't paying attention. People have been playing while they drive in Lansing, and that can be an issue for the police, as well as the safety of others.

But it isn't just drivers who are being unsafe. Local Pokemon Go players say they have seen pedestrians stop in the middle of the road to catch Pokemon.

"You've just got to pay attention to your surroundings," says Scott Rudy, who was out with his daughter playing the game. "Don't get too involved with your phone."

Rudy makes an effort to put his phone down or away before he crosses a street.

In addition to road safety, it's important to remember that trespassing is an issue as well. Meridian Township asks players to remember parks are closed after sunset. They also want Pokemon trainers in the community to be cognizant of other people in the area, whether it's at parks or in their neighborhoods, try and be quiet. Also, be respectful of cemeteries and religious organizations.

The best thing to keep in mind is to be aware. According to Chief Yankowski:

"If you're driving or walking, you have to know where your surroundings are."