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Davis AYSO, Region 218

Health and Safety

Health and safety

Reporting injuries/incidents

Within 24 hours of the incidents listed below, please complete the AYSO Incident Report Form and email it to safety@davisayso.org.

Complete this form for:
1. Injuries
2. Incident – threats
3. Incident – fighting – any type
4. Property damage
5. Law enforcement summoned

When an injured player is ready to return, parents must complete the Participation release form.

AYSO Severe Weather Play Policy and Guidelines

Cold and hot weather safety

Coaches, referees, and parents share responsibility for managing the safety of the players and volunteers when it involves heat or cold stress. This topic is too involved and complex to present a detailed discussion on this page. Refer to the Safe Haven Certification Manual for guidance.


The referee's first duty is to the safety of the players. The referee is empowered to (and must) stop the game play at anytime/immediately due to a significant injury, including those related to heat and cold stress. The definition of significant injury is dependent on the age and conditions. The game play is stopped sooner/quicker for younger players whereas for older players it might be allowed to continue for a short time depending on the situation. Game durations can be adjusted by the Referee upon consultation with the Coaches due to extreme weather conditions, such as extreme heat or cold.

In cold weather, players are allowed to wear warm clothing UNDER their uniforms. Hats without brims (e.g., knit caps) and gloves are also allowed. Sweatshirts worn under a shirt are allowed if they do not have hoods. (In the Select season, rules are pickier about dress, but safety is more important than appearance.) The referee has the last say on what is allowed but should be biased on the side of safety.

In hot weather, referees must be very attentive to the effects of heat on players. Breaks and half-time periods can be lengthened somewhat, if needed, to allow for hydration and recuperation. Periods of play may be shortened. Worse case, games can be terminated early. In U16/19 games (and in younger-aged games, if needed), play may be formally stopped to allow for hydration and recuperation. In any case, games must end prior to the scheduled start time of the next game.

Concussions

The topic of concussions is gaining importance in sports environments.
FAQs for parents: AYSO Parent Concussion FAQ
Online concussion training:CDC Heads Up Online Training C ourse. If you are an AYSO volunteer, take this same course at aysotraining.org to get credit on your AYSO record (AYSO ID number needed).
For more detailed information, see this website from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Concussion Fact Sheet

Electrical storm safety

In brief: if you hear thunder or see lightning, the activity must cease and participants must immediately seek shelter. If 30 minutes passes without further thunder or lightning, the activity may resume. If thunder or lightning recurs, the clock starts over. If the activity is a game, the game must end prior to the official start time of the next game.

From the Guidance for Referees, Coaches, Other Volunteers and Parents – 2011 (pg 47):
What procedure should be followed regarding electrical storms?
Thunder and Lightning Storms
A lightning safety plan should be an integral part of the planning process for any outdoor event. Do not wait for storm clouds to develop before considering what to do should lightning threaten! An effective plan begins LONG before any lightning threat is realized. The key to an effective lightning safety action plan lies in answers to the following questions:

Where is the safest lightning shelter?
How far is the group from that location?
How long will it take to get the group there?

Knowing the answers to these questions and formulating a plan of action accordingly will likely reduce the chances of anyone being struck by lightning.

If a Region has frequent thunderstorms, that Region should consider posting a safety policy on the Region’s Website, discussing it in Safe Haven® courses, emphasizing at all coach, referee and team parent orientation meetings and putting it in the Region Handbook distributed to participating families.

In tournament play or other special events, if there is a possibility of thunder and lightning storms, a pre-event meeting to discuss guidelines, safety procedures, duties and responsibilities of all event staff and participants should be conducted. A communication plan should also be considered so this information can be given to all participants and volunteers in order to execute emergency planning procedures.
Event officials will consult and determine the course of action – give the “all clear” sign for games to resume, cancel the balance of ongoing games or cancel games for the day. Event administrators, Regional Commissioners or their designees, including Coach Administrator, Referee Administrator or Referees, should have the authority, as so designated, to delay the start of play, call a halt in play or suspend/terminate a game due to severe weather conditions.

Most people are struck by lightning before and after storms have peaked, not at the height of a thunderstorm. Lightning often strikes miles from the area of rain. Please be aware of how far lightning can strike from its originating thunderstorm.
See also pages 32 & 33 of the AYSO Safe Haven Certification Manual for 2010-2011.

The United States Soccer Federation (USSF) position is that if you can hear thunder you are within reach of lightning and that referees must protect the safety of all participants by stopping game activities quickly, so that participants and spectators may retire to a safer place before the lightning threat becomes significant. Applying the 30-30 rule is recommended and to wait thirty minutes or more after hearing the last thunder before leaving shelter.

In view of the above, the following is the position of the AYSO National Referee Advisory Commission regarding severe weather:
“It is said that lightning can strike from a clear blue sky that is within a ten mile radius of a storm. It is therefore strongly recommended that practices and games be terminated immediately upon hearing thunder or seeing lightning.

“If you can see it - flee it; if you can hear it – clear it.”

Goal structures

POLICY: Persons under the age of 18 are not allowed to move goals or be nearby when goals are being moved. All goal movement and placement must be done by adults.


POLICY: Goals must be anchored or games shall not be played. 


References:
FIFA’s Laws of the Game, Law 1: “Safety. Goals must be anchored securely to the ground. Portable goals may only be used if they satisfy this requirement.”

USSF’s Advice to Referees, Section 1.3: “Goals. The goals must be securely anchored to the ground. For safety reasons, if the goals are not securely anchored to the ground, the match shall not be played.”


From the AYSO Safe Haven Certification Manual for 2010-2011, pg 29:
Goalpost Safety
The number one safety concern in soccer is the safety of goalposts. Movable soccer goals can tip over causing injury or death. This typical tip-over incident can happen when a child or young adult climbs on or hangs from the crossbar of a soccer goal which was left unattended or improperly anchored. The heavy goal tips over and injures the individual, sometimes causing death. Even a gust of wind can topple an unanchored goal.

To help avoid these incidents, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) urges consumers, school officials, soccer coaches, players, and organizers to follow these safety guidelines:

Securely anchor or counterweight portable goals at all times.
Check all connecting hardware before each use. Replace damaged or missing fasteners immediately.
Ensure safety labels are clearly visible.
Never allow anyone to climb on the net or goal framework.
Remove nets when goals are not in use.
Tip unused goals onto their goal face, or chain goals to nearby fence posts,dugouts, or any other similar sturdy fixture.
Fully disassemble goals for seasonal storage.

Players

Players must wear shinguards, covered with socks, to every training session and game.

Myth about shoes: "Players must wear soccer shoes." False. Any comfortable, safe shoes, such as running/athletic shoes, are acceptable. Not allowed are shoes with metal toe cleats.

Unless it's freezing, players should bring water to every training session and game.

Players under 18 are not allowed to move goals or be in the vicinity when goals are being moved.

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Davis AYSO, Region 218

P.O. Box 1602 
Davis, California 95617

Email Us: communications@davisayso.org
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