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Artificial Turf Fields, Health Questions: Connecticut Dept Public Health Report

Connecticut Department of Public Health
Environmental & Occupational Health Assessment
410 Capitol Avenue MS# 11EOH, PO Box 340308
Hartford, CT 06134-0308
(860) 509-7740
REPORT PUBLISHED October 2007 or you can download PDF HERE

Cities and towns across Connecticut have increasingly opted for replacement of
grass fields with a form of artificial turf that uses recycled rubber tires. The
tires are processed into crumb rubber and used as an infill material to cushion
the playing surface. Stated advantages over natural grass fields are reduced watering
and maintenance, avoiding the need for pesticides, reduced injuries, and
an “all-weather” playing surface. Questions have been raised regarding health,
safety and environmental aspects of the rubber infill material. Rubber contains
industrial chemicals that can be released into the air during playing and which
may run off into the environment in rainwater. This fact sheet focuses upon the potential health effects to athletes and spectators using these fields, many of whom are school-age children.

Thre report makes statements regarding the Department’s position on the following:

What Chemicals Can Be Released By The Infill Material?

How Can People Be Exposed To Rubber Chemicals At
Artificial Turf Fields?

Are People Exposed To These Chemicals In Other Ways?

Is There A Health Risk?

Should Towns Continue To Install This Type Of Artificial
Turf Field?

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