by Lee Igel, January 1, 2018
New Documentary Shows Artificial Turf Plays Important Role in Concussion Crisis
The Brett Favre-produced “Shocked” sheds light on how hard artificial turf fields can become when built without shock pads or not maintained.
The question about cities having a policy about field turf, in particular, is one that may not really have come up all that much yet. Most playing fields projects are currently including an artificial surface, usually composed of recycled rubber tires. Most of the discussions are around cost-benefit analysis of the project–and not whether to use grass versus artificial turf. (By the way, the brief write-up at this link has a good quick-hit on the pros and cons of using grass versus artificial turf: http://www.fg-inc.net/turf-wars/) There is plenty of policy available about access to and use of existing fields.
In terms of the turf research, at least the health/safety portion, the federal government action plan is attached to this message. It at least gives some language to the scope of research. That and other research is generally based on concerns over potential exposure to hazardous chemicals when recycled tire products (tire crumbs) are used as ground cover for playing fields. Most of that concern stemmed from reports of soccer goalies developing blood cancer around the same time and the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup being played on artificial turf. The specific concern has been about developing open wounds that could come into contact with the tire crumbs; this is a pretty good summary for context:
In any case, to be brief, studies thus far suggest that there is not a link between negative health conditions and using tire crumbs to cover fields. Some studies, for starters, to look at on that note: