Playing reality mobile game Pokemon Go while driving will get motorists an $80 (SR 300) fine in Saudi Arabia, according to the Traffic Department. Authorities have warned that the game could distract the driver and result in him hurting himself, other motorists, and pedestrians, reported the Saudi Gazette.
While no such fines have yet been handed out, security agencies have also been authorised to issue violation tickets, according to director general of the Eastern Province Traffic Department, Maj. Gen. Abdullah Al-Zahrani.
The Communication and Information Technology Commission (CITC) has also warned users that the game exposes their geographical locations. The game, which has become increasingly popular since its launch two weeks ago, uses satellite locations and digital graphics to showcase cartoon characters in real-life settings. It challenges players to capture the creatures and train them for virtual reality battles.
Pokemon Go has already been blamed for a series of traffic violations and accidents across the world, with a driver in Baltimore crashing his vehicle into a police car on Monday after being distracted by the game.
Saudi Arabia has issued a fatwa against the game and labelled it ‘forbidden’ in Islam for its use of non-Islamic symbols such as crosses and Freemasons’ triangle signs.
Officials in the UAE and Kuwait have also warned of the game’s security dangers.
Source: Arabian Business