Paintball safety alerts
An estimated 10 million people in the U.S. participate annually in paintball—a popular sport for many camps. Historically at Markel, paintball has few injuries; but unfortunately those that have been reported are severe eye injuries.
A study published in the American Journal of Ophthalmology found that the majority of paintball eye injuries occurred in a non-recreation, uncontrolled setting. Many were quite severe—including rupture of the eyeball in 28 percent of the patients and a detached retina in 19 percent. Surgery was required in 81 percent of the patients. Eventual removal of the eyeball was required in 22 percent. Near-normal vision was restored to only 36 percent of patients.
Players are sometimes unwittingly at risk when their goggles fog up, or a paintball splashes on their face shield, and they remove their eye-wear. The injuries reported to Markel occurred when active players took off their glasses to clean them or when players on the sidelines began horsing around. When left unprotected, the eyes are subject to impact from paintballs traveling at 100-400 feet per second.
At least two fatalities have occurred related to unscrewing the CO2 cylinder valve from the paintball gun, thereby turning the cylinder into a lethal rocket.Keep these tips in mind to increase safety during paintball games for your camp:
The information provided in this article is intended for general informational purposes only and should not be considered as all encompassing, or suitable for all situations, conditions, and environments. Please contact us or your attorney if you have any questions.