Friday, 03 July 2009 00:00
In last week’s Manhasset Press, Darren Gill, the marketing director for Field Turf, wrote a Letter to the Editor which attempted to dismiss the concerns of some of Manhasset’s citizens regarding the use and proliferation of artificial turf fields in our community as “emotional” and “precautionary.” It is interesting to note that these same citizens have a stated agenda to protect the health and welfare of our children. As a representative of the “leading company in the synthetic turf industry,” Mr. Gill certainly has a stake in his product’s acceptance, which brings his objectivity into question.
It has been conclusively shown that the rubber used in the recycled tires making up the foundation of tire crumb artificial turf contains chemicals known to be harmful in other applications. The question is, are these same chemicals harmful in this application?
Mr. Gill says that there are numerous studies which show tire crumb artificial turf is not definitively unsafe. Opponents question the validity and interpretation of these studies and say that they don’t show artificial turf to be definitively safe. So, at best, there is a large gray area to this question.
Sometimes a gray area is an acceptable format for moving ahead. However, in this case, that gray area could affect our children’s health and safety. We certainly don’t want our children to end up being the conclusive evidence for finding this type of artificial turf unsafe.