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Skateboard park rules being eased by California assembly bill

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James E. Ballidis
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Currently, in your California legislature, there is a movement under foot to loosen the restrictions and requirements on skateboard park operation.

Present law mandates that skateboard park operators require helmets be worn during operation of the park and when boarders are using the park. It also requires that elbow pads and knee pads be worn. The typical skateboarder is a person under the age of 18, although it can include adults.

Additionally, current law requires that skateboard parks report injuries so that information can be amassed on safety.

Assembly bill 874 attempts to loosen those requirements. Elbow and knee pads would not be required, and reports of injury would no longer be required.

The need for elbow pads and head protection is readily apparent in any skateboarding adventure. To require that the parks have their users wear such equipment is not intrusive or overly burdensome when considering the traumatic injuries that are likely to occur in the absence of such.

I believe this to be a step in the wrong direction. The purpose of elbow and knee pads is not only to protect the user, but to protect us from having to send out emergency personnel when someone has sustained a serious injury. Wearing protection is a very insignificant inconvenience, and anyone watching professional skateboarding sees those same skateboarders wearing the equipment. Additionally, a reporting requirement seems a reasonable way to monitor the types and amount of injuries that occur at these skateboard parks.


I believe this to be a bad idea, and one that should be defeated inside the legislative branch.

Category: General

1 Comments to "Skateboard park rules being eased by California assembly bill"

Obviously you aren't a skateboarder. Depending on what types of tricks or style of skateboarding you are doing various pieces of protective equipment aren't so much of a requirement.

For example when riding in a half pipe a skateboarder generally tries to absorb his fall by sliding on his knees. In the case of a half pipe skater knee pads are essentially a requirement. However, if you are simply skating along on a skateboard and fall over generally the last thing to hit the ground is your knees. More common injury would be a broken wrist.

With that said I'm not suggesting skateboarders not wear pads, but more that each skateboarder is best off assessing what pads and safety equip they require for themselves.

To me it would be like telling a flag football player that they need the same protective gear as a professional football player. Will they be safer? Sure, but lets not kid ourselves on what should be required and what should be optional.
Posted by Skateboarder on May 12, 2010 at 10:04 PM

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