The Regina Police Service has noticed the high number of residents walking around playing Pokémon GO. While the game has gotten players off the couch and enjoying walks outside, we’d like to remind you of a few safe playing habits, so that catching virtual creatures doesn’t put you in actual danger:
• Be aware of your surroundings: know where you are; don’t travel into isolated areas alone, keep out of private properties/yards and be respectful if you are entering a business. Don’t wander too far from your original location.
• Play as a team: Go out with a group of your friends, as there is safety in numbers. Part of the game involves setting “lures” or “bait” for Pokémon. Unfortunately, there are people who might seek to exploit or victimize players who are so wrapped up in the game that they forget to practice good personal safety. Designate someone to be a look-out for dangers, and make sure everyone watches for traffic and suspicious strangers.
• Be street-smart: Do not travel into the path of traffic for a Pokémon. Look both ways as you cross the street and don’t use your phone while crossing; keep your head up. Cross the street only at a cross-walk, not at mid-block or from between parked vehicles.
• Catch Carefully: If you are travelling in a vehicle as a passenger and notice a Pokémon, make sure the vehicle is safely stopped and legally parked before you exit. Do not jump out of vehicles to “catch” the creatures.
• Big buddies: Younger children should not be playing alone. Parents and caregivers can accompany young children and enjoy the bonding and fitness benefits. Or have an older sibling (over 16) go with youngsters.
• Early birds vs Night owls: If you can, play during daylight hours. If you can only play at night, wear reflective clothing, play with friends, and only cross the street in well-lit crosswalks.
The Regina Police Service would like to remind trainers that while it is a game, you still need to be street smart to avoid injuries. Have fun and play safe!