Is your Paintball Field Covered for First Strike Rounds?

first-strikeTo all our field owners, we are sending out an email blast but in case you miss it:

Recently an issue came up regarding First Strike Rounds. So for clarity we are issuing this statement to clarify. FSR’s are not covered in our insurance programs, and never have been. It might be in the future but not today.

Bottom line is this is not anything new, FSR hasn’t been allowed since inception in any insurance program that I have represented, the manufacturer has NOT gone thru the steps to get the definition included in the ASTM guidelines; it would cost them $75 to join. They would spend a lot of time, unpaid as members are volunteers, spend their money to have the goggles tested to ASTM standards when passed, pay to have the various netting manufacturers products tested to ASTM standards to see if it passes, get the goggle manufacturers to include them in their documentation as approved projectiles.

So issues are:
• What are the ASTM standards? The ASTM standards are used as a basis of guidelines for manufacturers, distributors, insurance companies, and attorneys.
• If they are not defined as a “paintball” per ASTM standards what are they? They are not currently defined as anything.
• Will it pass the ASTM paintball netting test? I am not aware of anyone testing this.
• Will it pass the ASTM goggle test? I am not aware of anyone testing the goggle systems. And yes all goggle manufacturers would have to be tested. Ophthalmologists, when first presented with this product info were concerned about an increased damage to eye vs a paintball since the polystyrene shell could fragment differently when it impacted. They were not happy with it and would argue against it until testing was done to show what affect would it have on an eye, how many Jules, etc.

I have seen several different types of “devices” for the scenario industry, speedball industry, and recreational industry and have been involved in providing information, my opinions, submitting to the insurance companies, getting some of them approved. I AM pro paintball, to the bone. I have owned a field, I have played the sport for 20 years, I am involved in ASTM helping to set standards and fight to protect you the player, the field owner, the insurance company, AND my business and 20 employees that rely on me to make their paychecks good. Our customers, who trust me to provide them with the best insurance company, the best coverage’s, the best loss control, and the best pricing that we can find. Sometimes we cannot include ALL the exposures for what the public would like to see.

Field owner’s get sued for things that you would not believe, someone slipped on ice in a parking lot when the snowstorm was still going on, someone lifted their mask, was warned twice, was shot in the eye before the ref could remove him. Two people talking in staging and one buddy shot his other buddy in the eye, barrel condom was not on. Father is suing a field because his son and himself were shot 6 times and feels that it was overshooting, but he wouldn’t put his gun up and leave the bunker during a big game, 1000 people playing…duh. So while the FSR players are saying that it is safe and that they want to use it, I understand their position. But it does not fit the definition of a paintball, it is made from a different material that breaks differently, it has not been tested to my knowledge to ASTM standards from anyone. Yes players have shot a mask, and they state that it is safe and just a paintball. B.S. it’s not just a paintball.

In closing, we cannot just add coverage for this product at this time. If Tiberius goes through the process to get this product under some definition, and gets the masks tested to ASTM standards with their product, and gets the mask manufacturers to approve its use with their masks, and get the different netting manufacturers to submit and have the netting tested to ASTM standards, it COULD become approved for recreational paintball fields.

Author: Larry

Larry Cossio has been insuring the entertainment industry for over 30 years.

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