Posted on

Board of Education Decides Turf is “Settled Science” Votes 5-0 to Re-turf flood Plain at Ridgewood High School


the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, last night the Ridgewood Board of Education voted tonight 5 to 0 to replace the artificial turf at RHS with the same rubber based turf that was installed in 2011 by the same company, Field Turf USA.

There was a small discussion in which Dr. Fishbein never mentioned that the field is in an active flood plain and because of that factor needs to be replaced earlier than  anticipated by the promotional material. There was no mention of the recent Maple Field installation using “geofill” and no mention that because the field abuts a brook, the crumb rubber infill ends up in the brooks and streams .

No mention of ‘global warming ” and the heat factor. Maple Field will be cooler by 20 degrees because of “geofill” is being used as opposed to crumb rubber. No experts were consulted , just Dr. Fishbein and zero questions from Board members apparently its “settled science” to the Ridgewood Board of Education.

We were shocked to find out that the Ridgewood Board of Education is still quoting a 2009 study conducted by the Ridgewood Environmental Advisory Committee (REAC) .

The REAC Study the BOE is using to justify turf fields came under much criticism at the time. Their fact finding was not longitudinal and disregarded many other sources of information

Field Turf, a vendor of synthetic turf, quotes a 2009 study conducted by the Ridgewood Environmental Advisory Committee (REAC) throughout its promotional materials. Specifically, on artificial turf fields and water safety: “Several recent studies explored this concern in great depth and found no basis for health or environmental concern due to leaching of hazardous materials from synthetic turf installations, similar to the one at Maple Field. REAC believes that there is sufficient evidence to support the conclusion that the field design at Maple Park poses no risk to the local environment in Ridgewood.

Ten years have passed and we have so much more evidence and testimony not to mention the most blatant fact: our turf fields exist in active flood plains.The Board has disregarded all the evidence in 2010-2011 and paid the price.

The question of cancer and artificial turf gained significant national attention in the United States with a series of news stories on “NBC Nightly News” regarding a cluster of cancers in young women soccer players. A cancer cluster is the appearance of an unusually high rate of cancer in one location in a particular time frame. The story was dismissed by the turf industry, which has said the playing surface is safe.

In a Washington Post Article in March of 2017, “Does playing on artificial turf pose a health risk for your child? ” ,the post voiced concern over “crumb rubber fill” ,”Modern tires are a mixture of natural and synthetic rubber, carbon black — a material made from petroleum — and somewhere between four and 10 gallons of petroleum products. They also contain metals, including cadmium, lead, which is neurotoxic, and zinc. Some of the chemicals in tires, such as dibenzopyrenes, are known carcinogens. Also, in addition to chemicals used in the manufacture of the tire, any chemical the tires were exposed to in their use can become absorbed on the carbon black in the tires.”

Incidentally every time there is a flood , run off ends up in the in our streams and rivers and perhaps ,finds its way into our drinking water.

Grass is best and the next best alternative is organic infill that will decompose in the land fills and is less harmful to the environment and the health and safety of the those using the fields.

17 thoughts on “Board of Education Decides Turf is “Settled Science” Votes 5-0 to Re-turf flood Plain at Ridgewood High School

  1. With a wallet full of $111 million, why not?

  2. It’s only money. So what if it’s washed away every now and then.

  3. You would never think they
    Were Ridgewood taxpayers

    The way they spend. Money

  4. Lacrosse and soccer call the shots….turf wins out every time…

  5. Whenever anyone says somthing is “settled science” they usually are full of sh*t and have no credible science to back it up.

  6. Wow . Another million.

  7. You people actually think its cheaper to have a grass field?

  8. Turf field is WAY cheaper and much more durable and used many more times that grass (or what was mud or dry hard pack dirt)

  9. “You would never think they
    Were Ridgewood taxpayers

    The way they spend. Money”

    Very Haiku.

  10. Screw it let’s just do Vets and Citizens as well!!

  11. For those that think artificial turf is “ way cheaper” it is not true for flood plains. Many companies that install artificial turf will tell you that a single flooding incident can destroy artificial turf. RHS Stadium, Stevens Field and Maple Field required thousands of dollars over and above the expected maintenance costs to repair the fields after multiple floodings.

  12. I vote for grass

  13. The 100-Yard Deception

  14. even with flooding, turf is still the right choice – both in terms of finances and usability.

  15. Stupid does as Stupid is..imbeciles.let them eat turf…

    cue up this piece every five years james

  16. The Science is far from settled. The EPA has removed its “Safe to Play” label for artificial turf and in 2016 launched a multi-agency Federal study to address shortfalls in EVERY previous study – be it from limited sample size, no longitudinal follow up, etc.

    Artificial Turf with tire crumb rubber fill is a crap shoot at best. Products made from shredded tires are exempt from solid and hazardous waste regulations because of the 1976 Federal Resource and Recovery Act. Tires are known to contain carcinogens and heavy metals including lead. Chopping them to bits does not remove these harmful substances.

  17. Why are we spending a million on turf, why are we allowing Ridgewood to become over developed, why are we allowing the destruction of our train station and downtown? Follow the money…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.