To: Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer Affiliates
From: Chris Branscome, Chief Executive Officer
Date: September 20, 2010
RE: Goal Safety
As concerned administrators, coaches and parents, I want to remind you all of the seriousness of goal safety. As I have visited several fields throughout our association in recent months, I have seen an alarming number of unsecured or poorly secured soccer goals.
I urge you all to have a soccer goal safety strategy in place, with good reason. From 1998-2008, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has received reports of at least eight deaths and an estimated 2,000 emergency room visits by children under 16 years of age that were related to soccer goal tip-overs and structural failures. According to Anchored for Safety, a nonprofit initiative for promoting soccer goal safety awareness, five soccer goal-related deaths have occurred in the past two years.
According to US Youth Soccer, unanchored or improperly secured soccer goals account for seven of the top twenty insurance claims, nationally, in youth soccer. Three were fatalities and four resulted in injury to the players. The personal impact on players, families, teams and clubs is devastating. The combined financial losses amount to over $5 million, not including additional time or expense to defend the organizations. Playing on school or municipal fields does not absolve your organization of the responsibility or liability. Please urge those organizations that you partner with or rent space from to address this issue.
As we progress further into the new soccer season, please remind your coaches and referees to inspect, BEFORE EVERY PRACTICE, TRAINING ACTIVITY, AND GAME:
(1) All goal posts and nets for safety, that they are properly anchored and secured
(2) The field and areas around the field that are being used
Risk management is not just about background checks. To ensure our member’s safety as best we can, we need to be diligent and proactive in all aspects of the game. For further information, articles and handouts please go to EPYSA.org to learn more on proper goal safety. You can find this information in the Risk Management section of the website under the Administrative tab. Please educate your membership so that we may have a safe and healthy season.
On behalf of the Board of Directors and our more than 130,000 players, thank you for your continued efforts.
Chief Executive Officer
Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer