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Thread: The Turf Field At Wayland High School

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    14

    Thumbs up The Turf Field At Wayland High School

    In recent days you may have seen or read news reports about 2 Artificial Turf Fields that were closed in New Jersey due to lead. I want to assure everyone that those fields are NOT the type of field that we have here in Wayland. The closed fields were from Astro Turf and made of nylon fibers. Wayland's field is from Field Turf and is made of polyethylene fibers which is same type of field installed at Harvard, Yale, Dartmouth, Princeton, Columbia, Gillette Stadium and on and on. New Jersey checked 12 Field Turf installations and cleared them of any issue related to lead. Please read the following release:
    FIELDTURF GIVEN GREEN LIGHT BY THE NJDHSS

    The New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services (NJDHSS) has tested 12 artificial turf fields and found that there are "very low or undetectable levels of lead" in the polyethylene fibers used by FieldTurf.

    However, the NJDHSS stated that "high levels of lead" were found in the nylon turf fibers - old style, carpet-like fibers that are not even remotely similar to FieldTurf’s fibers. FieldTurf has never used nylon fibers. These tests confirm yet again that FieldTurf fields are safe for the players and the environment.

    This is not the first time that FieldTurf, the inventor of the infilled grass system, has been mistakenly accused and lumped in with other turf manufacturers.

    The fibers in the FieldTurf system, installed on more than 200 fields in the Garden State and over 2500 fields worldwide, have a positive impact on the environment because FieldTurf uses only environmentally friendly components.

    "The safety of athletes and communities is, and always has been, the number one priority at FieldTurf," said FieldTurf Tarkett CEO Joe Fields. "Our commitment to the environment ensures that our products are constantly being tested to ensure safety. The FieldTurf system has worked wonders for organizations all over the world as a product that reduces water consumption and pollution caused by chemical use, while increasing playing time, reducing injuries and promoting a healthy lifestyle."

    The installation of FieldTurf eliminates the use of harmful pesticides, fertilizers, herbicides and fungicides, while at the same time removes thousands of tires from landfill sites. FieldTurf requires no mowing, fertilizing, reseeding or watering. FieldTurf helps organizations earn the necessary points needed for U.S. Green Building Council LEED certification. FieldTurf’s reused rubber content and water use reduction, among other factors, can contribute up to 10 points towards LEED certification.



    Synthetic Turf Council Offers Clarity & Context to Concerns About New Jersey Fields

    The Synthetic Turf Council, representing the U.S. synthetic turf industry, wants to offer some clarity and context to the concerns raised by the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services yesterday.

    We offer this information as part of our corporate and community responsibility to not only promote health and safety, but also to act as an industry that relies on science, technology, research, engineering, testing and factual data. These standards have enabled our industry to develop cutting edge products that provide safe, environmentally sound sports and recreation facilities for communities throughout the country, contributing to the conservation of land and natural resources.

    Based on the facts, chemical science, and research that is readily available, we believe the synthetic turf fields identified in New Jersey, and similar fields made with nylon fibers, are safe to use and pose no known risk to an individual's health or the environment.

    Here are the facts:

    The pigment used to color the nylon fiber contains lead chromate, a component used to extend the yarn color lifespan. Lead chromate is a highly insoluble compound with extremely low bioavailability, which is diluted, extruded with resins and microencapsulated within the nylon fiber. In fact, OSHA requires no protective measures when handling the turf fibers.

    Extremely low bioavailability means that even if the compound were to be ingested, it is very difficult for the compound to be absorbed within the body. There is no known evidence that this poses any health risk.

    The City of Newark recently conducted elemental analysis testing using EPA approved protocols on turf fibers from Ironbound Stadium, one of the fields identified in the New Jersey report. A separate independent test, supervised by Dr. Davis Lee, PhD of Chemistry with InnovaNet, was also conducted. Both tests concluded that under EPA approved test conditions, no leaching of heavy metals occurs. In other words – the lead chromate can’t escape the nylon within which it is contained.

    In addition, the City of Newark ordered an air monitoring test which was conducted by Weston Solutions at the Ironbound site during removal of the stadium’s nylon surface. The test found no detectable levels of airborne lead or lead chromate. The technical data and summaries of these tests are available to the public and the media.

    It’s important to point out that the evaluation by the New Jersey DHSS of the safety of the material content of the synthetic turf in question is being made by using EPA residential soil safety standards. The EPA soil safety standard does not take into consideration the extremely low bioavailability of compounds that are bound and encapsulated in plastics such as synthetic turf.
    Given the serious nature of the report issued yesterday, it’s critically important to point out the DHSS report itself acknowledges there is “a very low risk of exposure” to the users of the fields in question.

    About the Synthetic Turf Council

    Based in Atlanta, the Synthetic Turf Council was founded in 2003 to serve as an objective resource assisting buyers and end users with the selection, use, and maintenance of synthetic turf systems in sports field, golf, and landscape applications. The organization actively collects reputable studies and research, as well as official statements by governmental agencies and sports organizations, which address the impact of synthetic turf sports fields. STC members produce and install most of the synthetic turf sports fields in North America. Membership includes builders, landscape architects, testing labs, maintenance providers, installation contractors and other specialty service companies. For more information, visit www.syntheticturfcouncil.org.

    Thank you.

    Craig Foreman

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    14

    Default Follow Up About the NJ Turf Fields

    Please note that the at least one of the turf fields in NJ that was closed due to lead is being replaced by Field Turf. Apparently they weren't scared off by their turf experience as others would have you believe.
    Please read on.

    CITY OF HOBOKEN TO GET FIELDTURF AFTER OLD NYLON TURF FIELD DEEMED UNSAFE

    After much controversy over the old nylon NexTurf field at Frank Sinatra Park in Hoboken, NJ, city officials have awarded an emergency contract to FieldTurf in order to replace the old turf with the FieldTurf system that is widely known as the safest turf on earth. FieldTurf will begin work on the field next week

    The NexTurf field was closed due to the fact that the nylon fibers of this old turf system contained levels of lead that were deemed to be unsafe. FieldTurf’s polyethylene fibers, on the other hand, have been found to be completely safe for the environment.

    “FieldTurf uses polyethylene fibers, not the nylon fibers that were suspect," said Joe Fields, FieldTurf Tarkett CEO. "Our fields were tested and found to be about 50 times below what the US Consumer Product Safety Commission allows in Mr. Potato Head or in Lego. Our product reduces water consumption and pollution caused by chemical use, while increasing playing time, reducing injuries and promoting a healthy lifestyle. The safety of athletes and communities is, and always has been, the number one priority at FieldTurf”.

    The City of Hoboken is getting a turf system that has proven its safety for people of all ages on over 200 fields in the Garden State and over 2500 fields worldwide.

    “We have done our research and believe that FieldTurf is safe for the environment and for all that play on the field. Our parents also believe this is the safest turf on the market,” said City of Hoboken Mayor David Roberts. “What we are getting is a state-of-the-art field and I am so happy with this that we already have our engineers looking at ways to turn other areas such as rooftops and parking lots into areas with FieldTurf. We are extremely appreciative that FieldTurf is doing everything that they can to get our kids back on the field as soon as possible”.

    Recent testing by the New Jersey DHSS found trace amounts of lead in FieldTurf ranging between 1-1.6 parts per million (PPM). By comparison, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s acceptable concentration of lead in children’s toys is 60 parts per million, with ground water being considered ‘safe’ with a lead content of 400 parts per million. Moreover, According to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, lead is found in the Earth's crust at about 15–20 PPM, so the concentration of lead in polyethylene turf fibers is actually well below the levels typically found in natural soil.

    The installation of FieldTurf eliminates the use of harmful pesticides, fertilizers and herbicides, while at the same time removes thousands of tires from landfill sites. FieldTurf requires no mowing, fertilizing, reseeding or watering. FieldTurf helps organizations earn the necessary points needed for U.S. Green Building Council LEED certification. FieldTurf’s reused rubber content and water use reduction, among other factors, can contribute towards many LEED certification points.



    Thank you.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Wayland MA 463 Old Conn Path
    Posts
    382

    Default Turf Field Temperature Issue

    Hi Craig,

    I appreciate the detailed explanation of the materials used in our turf field not providing any significant lead exposure threat and I have read through the details that you have posted including the links that were intact.

    A letter to the editor was posted recently which addressed a temperature issue concerning the turf field and an implication that outgassing can occur along with the raised temperature levels.

    I've also read a number of questions that have been raised about this issue and, frankly, I'm confused as to whether there is an issue or not.

    I tried to do some additional research before writing this question to you by clicking: http://www.syntheticturfcouncil.org/...urfcouncil.org
    but the link was broken so I could not ask questions of the SyntheticTurfCouncil, at least at this time.

    So what I'm asking if you could please comment on the following:

    1. Given the type of turf material that was used, is there in fact, any concern as to unsafe or abnormal temperatures that may occur?

    2. And, If there is any raised or abnormally high temperatures associated with this type of turf, is outgassing a factor that needs to be considered in any manner?

    3. If any of the above 2 questions do present usage or health concerns then what if any would be the mitigation remedies?

    I think that a detailed answer to these questions would put to rest any lingering concerns with respect to these issues once and for all.

    Thank you

    Alan

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    14

    Default Wayland doesn't have the only Turf Field

    Alan, the town has control of the field and Nancy McShea would be the one to answer your questions but I will simply say she has the answers that in your words will put to rest this discussion. You can also check out the Park and Rec web site.
    Finally, for all to know last month in Sparks, Nevada they installed a 1.4M sq ft Field Turf Field. The largest installation ever installed.

    Thank you.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    726

    Default Documents for and against turf safety

    I have received the attached documents on turf safety for general review.

    There's more information about field safety from the Park & Rec department available here.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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