Thursday, January 26, 2012

‎6.2.4 Any contact with the head of a skater not wearing a helmet.

Today’s rule also comes from the High Blocking or Blocking to the Head section. It is a High Block expulsion. Prior to this rule, there is this paragraph:

The following egregious acts making contact with the head of an opponent or above her shoulders will be automatic game expulsions, and can be punished as a multi-game suspension (see Section Expulsions will be issued for a conscious, forceful attempt to commit any of the following egregious acts, whether or not the attempt was successful (e.g., a swing-and-a-miss).

Expulsions are penalties issued due to extremely unsafe game play. I don’t think it requires convincing anyone that a block to the head of a skater not wearing a helmet is extremely unsafe. Helmets are required safety equipment for a reason, therefore a block to the head of a skater not wearing one is inherently unsafe. You might be asking yourself when there might be a chance that a skater isn’t wearing a helmet. Although incredibly rare, a situation where a skater may be contacted while not wearing a helmet is possible. This could be a skater who gets blocked to the ground and her helmet comes off. Another possibility is a skater who has been hurt but crawled out of the way to the infield to prevent the jam being called, and who removes her helmet. A very distinct possibility is a skater who is lining up for the next jam and removes her helmet to adjust it. A distinct yet unfortunate situation is a fight with a skater not wearing a helmet. Regardless of how a skater’s helmet comes off, contact with her head while she isn’t wearing one is incredibly unsafe, and is thus worthy of an expulsion. In situations such as a fight, a suspension might be appropriate. Within the WFTDA suspensions are dealt with officially, with regards to sanctioned bouts. Outside of the WFTDA suspensions can really only be upheld by the skater’s league, should they choose to issue one.