Chicago law firm Corboy & Demetrio has produced three public-service announcement videos warning parents about the dangers of unanchored soccer goals. The PSAs feature the Tran family of Vernon Hills, who lost their 6-year-old son, Zachary, when a soccer goal fell on him in 2003, striking his head. Personal injury attorney Shawn Kasserman with Corboy & Demetrio secured a $3 million settlement for the family in its suit against the park district, soccer associations and goal maker. He also helped in the family’s efforts to get Zach’s Law passed in August 2011, making Illinois the first state to ban the sales and manufacture of moveable goals unless they are tip-resistant. Organizations owning moveable soccer goals must also create soccer-goal safety policies.
The PSAs warn that, despite the new law, many unsecured soccer goals are still in use and urge parents to check them before allowing their children to play. The announcements are posted on the firm’s website and the websites of several groups, including a youth soccer organization. They have also been played at public meetings and are slated to run on three Chicago TV network affiliates.
“Our public service announcement on soccer-goal safety came out of the realization that soccer-goal manufacturers are not going to protect our children from the dangerous design of these goals,” says Kasserman. “The manufacturers have a legal and moral duty to provide reasonably safe products as well as adequately warn us about dangerous conditions in their products. They have done neither, and this PSA is our attempt at doing what they should have done long ago.”