ROCKY MOUNT, N.C. (WNCT) – The City of Rocky Mount is taking preventative measures to ensure public safety and is requesting the removal of all city-owned addresses from the popular augmented reality game Pokémon Go.
“When the game was first released, there wasn’t any mechanism that would allow us to give any feedback to where the stops and gyms should or should not be located,” says Michael Baughn, property and risk manager for the city of Rocky Mount. “Many of the places the game sends players to are just not safe for the public or for our employees.”
He added that places like electrical substations, fire stations, the wastewater treatment plants and numerous other areas can cause safety issues, especially for distracted players.
“If we could assign where the stops are, I think it could be something the city could entertain,” says Baughn. “But without knowing where all the stops and gyms are, we cannot do our due diligence as required by law. The safety of our residents and employees is paramount for us.”
Nearly 134 city addresses are on the requested removal list, including all parks, the Rocky Mount Sports Complex and the Imperial Centre for the Arts and Sciences.
Throughout the country, numerous accidents have been reported due to distracted gameplay. So far, the city of Rocky Mount has not had any incidents reported on any of its properties.