Paintball Safety Rules for Backyard Games

Bob McGuire (PTI & APL) Paintball industry Blog, for Paintball Fields and Manufacturers. Problems and Opportunities, ASTM updates, LOW IMPACT PAINTBALL.

Paintball Safety Rules for Backyard Games

Paintball safety rules for backyard paintball games. Should Children be Supervised? …YES!

Paintball safety is fundamental and paramount in any paintball game, regardless of the level of play. Safe backyard games require proper organization and supervision… just as players and spectators would experience at a commercial playing field operating in compliance with ASTM standard procedures. This is important for our industry, as backyard paintball games are often the first experience for true “newbies”, and what they see and hear that first time will carry over to their future impressions and understanding of paintball safety.

What Does This Mean For Parents?
Parents who purchase paintball equipment for their children have a serious responsibility to understand and implement paintball safety protocol wherever that equipment is used. This is true for any adult who purchases paintball equipment for use by minority age players. Paintball players must be instructed in the proper safe use of the paintball markers they are using. A pregame player safety briefing is required.

These safety rules are important even if the projectile launchers appear to be toys, intended for target shooting only. If they shoot paintballs, their use needs to be properly supervised. Children who shoot paintballs at targets might accidentally shoot towards other children or even neighbors. Paintball requires that anyone within range who might be struck by a paintball must be required to wear goggles made specifically for paintball. This would require proper barriers (ASTM Standard F-1777) around the perimeter of the play site. Game supervisors should also require that every paintball launcher have a barrel blocker in place whenever that launcher is not on the playing field. Players should be prohibited from removing their goggles on the playing field, even after games are over, until the paintball launchers are secured with barrel blockers in place. Playing field boundaries should be properly marked, and protected with barriers which prevent paintballs from flying out from the play site. This is especially important near property boundaries, where neighbors may approach to observe the games.

These may appear to be onerous requirements, but they are reasonable and responsible.

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