WASHINGTON – Thousands of youth and adult soccer players in the area are gearing up for the spring soccer season. At the same time, a proposed bill in the Virginia Legislature aims to make games and practices a safer activity for soccer players.
Lawmakers are proposing stricter requirements for soccer goals, which can tip over when they are not properly anchored. If passed, the Movable Soccer Goal Safety Act would require field owners to have a goal safety and education policy and would ban moveable goals that are not tip-resistant by July 1, 2014.
The bill would also instruct the Virginia Board of Health to provide technical assistance in order to improve soccer goal safety.
Already through the Senate and a House committee, the bill mirrors an Illinois law and comes after a 10-year-old was killed by an unsecured soccer goal in 2007 in Frederick County, Va.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission offers additional tips to prevent deaths and injuries associated with soccer goals:
Use movable soccer goals only on level (flat) fields.
Never climb on the soccer net or goal framework.
Ensure safety labels are clearly visible.
Remove nets when goals are not in use.
WTOP’s Max Smith contributed to this report. Follow @WTOP on Twitter.