Two young Canadians were apprehended in Montana by US border patrol agents after they illegally crossed the US border while they were playing the recently released app, Pokémon Go.
According to the report made Friday by the U.S Customs and Border Protection, the boys entered by foot to the United States from Canada while they were searching for new Pokémon Characters through the new Pokémon go app, which has quickly become a social media phenomenon.
Gotta Catch ‘Em All
According to the US agents the teens, who are siblings, were wandering in US territory when they were detained after inadvertently crossing the border illegally on Thursday. The officers “quickly determined in the field that the juveniles were unaware of their surroundings” said the Border Patrol. The authorities declined to make public the teenagers’ names and ages, though it is known they are from Alberta, Canada.
They entered by foot and were detained near Sweet Grass, Montana located next to the Town of Coutts, in Alberta. They were held in the border patrol Station for their mother to pick them up. Though the teenagers didn’t mean to enter illegally in the US, the event has raised awareness about the distracting effects of Pokémon Go, the popular location-based augmented reality mobile game. Apparently, they were so captivated by the game “that they lost track of where they were”, authorities alleged.
The Pokémon Go Mania
Pokémon, created in 1995, is a franchise managed by The Pokémon Company based on a broad range of fictional animal-like creatures called Pokémon, that humans train and catch with the Poké-Ball to make them battle against each other as a sport.
Although it started as a video Game for Gameboy, its popularity has led the company to develop anime series, movies, soundtracks, manga series, card games and even a monopoly board game based on the Pokémon. Now, it’s the turn for Pokémon Go, which was developed by Niantic as a free-play mobile game available for iOS and Android devices, where the players use their cameras and GPS to localize and capture Pokémon characters in real-world locations.
The game was released in most of the world in July 2016. Though some app issues have been detected, the free app was highly demanded by customers, being downloaded by more than 40 million people all over the world by July 22. This Pokémon Mania, as some have described, has caused certain incidents because of people being too distracted while catching the Pokemon.
— The Straits Times (@STcom) July 23, 2016
Besides the illegal crossing event, other Pokémon-related accidents have occurred in the last days in the U.S. In Baltimore a driver crashed into a parked police car as he was playing Pokémon Go on Monday. As well, early this week another driver was too diverted while catching a Pokémon that he struck a sedan. Fortunately, no one was hurt by these accidents.
Certainly, Pokémon Go has become a hit within a few days. Due to the incredibly positive results, the Company representatives announced the release of Pokémon Sun and Moon, a new generation of games, expected by November 2016.