Reduce risk with CPSC baseball safety guidelines

This is an excerpt from Risk Management in Sport and Recreation, by John O. Spengler, Daniel P. Connaughton, and Andrew T. Pittman.


The CPSC wants you and your family to be safe when playing baseball. The CPSC announced that softer-than-standard baseballs, safety-release bases, and batting helmets with face guards could significantly reduce the number and severity baseball-related injuries to children each year.

Baseball, softball, and teeball are among the most popular sports in the United States, with an estimated 6 million children ages 5 to 14 participating in organized leagues and 13 million children participating in nonleague play. In 1995, hospital emergency rooms treated an estimated 162,100 children for baseball-related injuries.

The CPSC collected and analyzed data on baseball-, softball-, and teeball-related injuries to children to determine specifically how these children were injured and what safety equipment could prevent such injuries. The CPSC found that baseball protective equipment currently on the market may prevent, reduce, or lessen the severity of more than 58,000 injuries occurring to children each year. Softer-than-standard balls (see figure A.12) may prevent, reduce, or lessen the severity of the 47,900 ball-impact injuries to the head and neck.

 

Batting helmets with face guards (see figure A.13) may prevent, reduce, or lessen the severity of about 3,900 facial injuries occurring to batters in organized play.

Safety-release bases (see figure A.14) that leave no holes in the ground or parts of the base sticking up from the ground when the base is released may prevent, reduce, or lessen the severity of the 6,600 base-contact sliding injuries occurring in organized play.



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