Japan Today

85-year-old woman fatally struck by driver playing Pokemon Go


An 85-year-old woman was fatally struck by a car in Nishio City, Aichi Prefecture, police said Sunday. The female driver of the car, who resides in the same city, was arrested on suspicion of negligent driving resulting in death, Sankei Shimbun reported.

The incident occurred at around 10:15 a.m. on Saturday. Yoshi Nagata was crossing a prefectural road in Heisakacho, when she was suddenly struck by the car. Nagata was rushed to hospital but died an hour and a half later from her injuries.

Police revealed Sunday that the driver admitted she was playing Pokemon Go while operating her vehicle at the time of the incident. Police quoted her as saying she was looking at her mobile phone game’s history—a tracking feature called “The Adventure Notebook”—at the time of the accident.  

Since 2016, drivers playing Pokemon Go have been blamed for a number of driving fatalities. A feature was added to make it inoperable when moving at a certain speed. However, this specification is apparently disabled when players view “The Adventure Notebook.”

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I may be wrong, but didn't a truck driver recently get two years for doing the same thing? Expect a light sentence if any, or a payoff followed by a dropping of the charges.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

I often see them at night in a free parking lot here, cruising around slowly, glued to their screens catching pixels. They don't do any harm, but they just annoy me. I've considered bouncing myself off their cars, rinsing them for a million or two. Reckon I could get away with a couple of shakedowns a year.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

..........and maybe a broken leg or two. Let us know how it goes.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Same in Hachioji. Hard to walk down the street sometimes. Some people are using 2 or 3 phones at once. Gotta get 'em all.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Wow. Born in 1933. Lived through the war years. Probably 12 or 13 when the war ended. Probably raised a family, grandkids, still getting around on the city streets at 85. Only to be run down by some selfish zombie playing a game while driving.

Really sad.

13 ( +14 / -1 )

People still play it?

8 ( +10 / -2 )

"Einstein: I fear the day when the technology overlaps with our humanity. The world will have a generation of idiots."

It seems Einstein predicted the future very well. It's not just the idiots playing Pokemon Go. There is a string of common distractions for drivers in Japan, all of which are illegal, but disregarded.

Here's a short list of common illegal distractions I see every day:

Watching TV while driving - Illegal!

Texting on a mobile phone - Illegal!

Speaking on a mobile phone - Illegal!

Playing games on a phone or iPad - Illegal! (and stupid!)

Reading newspaper draped across the steering wheel - Illegal!

Putting on make up while driving - Illegal!

Shaving while driving - Illegal!

Kids jumping around in the front of the car - Illegal!

Drivers nursing babies and toddlers while driving - Illegal! (and stupid!)

Dogs and cats on the driver's lap - Illegal!

The fines for most of these offenses are quite hefty. Phone use carries a ¥50,000 penalty and 3 points off their licence. However, due to the passive policing drivers get away with it and continue to do it knowing there is little chance of them being caught, until they kill somebody, of course. Driving is a privilege, not a right. Abuse of privileges usually results in that privilege being taken away, but this does not seem to be the case in Japan, until you kill somebody.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

What an absolute loser.

Not only is an adult playing this game, but playing it while driving. Well, she's a killer now. Murdered an old lady for the sake of a children's game.

The amount of shame she has heaped on herself and her family is going to ruin her. Oh, that plus he prison term I would imagine

5 ( +6 / -1 )

I hate stupid people

5 ( +5 / -0 )

The curse of DWD (Driving While Distracted) has got to end.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

This is worse than driving drunk.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

This is not an isolated act. It is only an act that killed someone (not the first time). The fact is that Japanese will put "how we do things" over the law when they are sure they can get away with it. This would have been the true with this case if the driver had not happened to run over an old lady.

What will happen to this moronic driver is anyone's guess. She will at most be found guilty of involuntary manslaughter. She'll probably get a relatively light sentence. I mean at most a suspended sentence. One can only hope that she will have her license permanently revoked. I wonder if this driver will feel any amore.

Yes, the old lady lived through World War II, only to be run down by a moron playing a moronic game. There are worse ways to die, like the suicide in a substitute prison for foreigners. There is no remorse for that from officialdom. There is no remorse for all the war crimes Japan committed. Don't except too many tears from this stupid driver for very long.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I personally find driving in Japan challenging compared to where I am from in the US. With main thoroughfares here the width of one lane in the US, loads of of people, dogs, bicycles and cars popping out of nowhere all the time, I have my eyes glued to the road and still it seems to not be enough. I need another set of eyes!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Is time yet to take distracted driving as a danger seriously

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Why does this type of behavior happen again and again?

Simply because the police here do not enforce the law!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Drivers nursing babies and toddlers while driving - Illegal! (and stupid!)

I've seen that several times in Japan too!!!!!!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"However, this specification is apparently disabled when players view “The Adventure Notebook.”"

Newsflash, you can do ANYTHING on your cell phone, or anything else for that matter, while driving. The issue is not the game, the issue is bad driving. The function that disabled the television in cars while the car is moving some years back was stopped on many navigation systems because it was "not popular", the result being you can now watch television again while driving. Saw a dude go through a red yesterday at 4:30 p.m., and thought I caught a Hanshin Tigers pitcher throwing. Now, I had not been watching the guy and know that Japanese are notorious for going through red lights after they turn, and he hit me, would they blame television or the Hanshin Tigers? Nope. It wouldn't even make the news.

Again, the issue is negligent driving, not what the person was negligent doing. Oh, and today I was bumped into AGAIN going inside a bank by a woman who had just, I'm assuming, finished doing something on an ATM and was staring at her bank book while walking out the door as I entered. Should we ban bank books? or will people admit it might just be the woman who was holding it should have been paying more attention.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

She survived WWII, only to be struck down by some woman playing Pokemon Go.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The fact is that Japanese will put "how we do things" over the law when they are sure they can get away with it.

And this only applies to Japanese in your small world.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

therougou: "And this only applies to Japanese in your small world."

It doesn't happen only in Japan, but they do get away with it a whole lot more here, and in fact, often have laws repealed because safety is trumped by inconvenience. We see it all the time, and in fact did you know that while seatbelt were made mandatory by law for even passengers in the back seat only a few years ago, it only really applies on expressways? and even if caught, the driver, for example, only risks losing a point on his/her license, but no fine, because fining them "might be unpopular"? When cycling with more than one child on the bike at a time was made illegal in Osaka it was repealed in only weeks after young mother's said it was inconvenient, despite the fact that cycling with some of the tanks they ride and two or more kids strapped in results in more injuries because of weight problems. So, yes, the poster who said that is not incorrect, and while you are also correct in that it applies to other places it well, it does not fly in other places to the extent it does here.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Hold on..........people STILL play this game?

0 ( +0 / -0 )


I agree with most of what you said, but it is not directly related to the comment I responded to. What you are saying is more a problem with how the police go about their business. I can think of a million examples of how Japanese abide by the law more than their overseas counterparts, so generalizing that "Japanese will put "how we do things" over the law when they are sure they can get away with it" is just plain wrong (but expected on this site). And personally having a family friend that was hit and killed by someone texting back in the US, it certainly doesn't apply in the context of this article.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Rip to that women

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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