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RiskManagement 

Safe Play Concerns

Goal Safety
 

The perception of injury in youth soccer is limited to the kids playing on the field. But injuries can come from many sources. Each year kids and others are injured from falling soccer goal posts. Accordingly, please take the Guidelines contained herein and U.S. Products Safety Commission Guidelines seriously.

There are approximately 225,000 to 500,000 soccer goals in the United States. Many of these soccer goals are unsafe because they are unstable and are either unanchored or not properly anchored or counter-balanced. These movable soccer goals pose an unnecessary risk of tip-over to children who climb on goals (or nets) or hang from the crossbar.

The Consumer Products Safety Commission knows of four deaths in 1990 alone and at least 21 deaths during the past 16 years associated with movable soccer goals. In addition, an estimated 120 injuries involving falling goals were treated each year in U.S. hospital emergency rooms during the period 1989 through 1993. Many of the serious incidents occurred when the soccer goals tipped over onto the victim.

The majority of movable soccer goals are constructed of metal, typically weighing 150-500 pounds. The serious injuries and deaths are a result of blunt force trauma to the head, neck, chest, and limbs of the victims. In most cases this occurred when the goal tipped or was accidentally tipped onto the victim. In one case an 8-year-old child was fatally injured when the movable soccer goal he was climbing tipped over and struck him on the head. In another case, a 20-year-old male died from a massive head trauma when he pulled a goal down on himself while attempting to do chin-ups. In a third case, while attempting to tighten a net to its goal post, the victim's father lifted the back base of the goal causing it to tip over striking his 3-year-old child on the head, causing a fatal injury.

High winds can also cause movable soccer goals to fall over. For example, a 9-year-old was fatally injured when a goal was tipped over by a gust of wind. In another incident, a 19-year-old goalie suffered stress fractures to both legs when the soccer goal was blown on top of her.

 
 

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