In the past months the size of the Israeli-Australian Coalition has been growing rapidly, and along with it has grown concerns for the safety of it's members, especially it's younger ones. In just the preliminary events of this years games, there have been nearly 300 casualties under the age of 18 among the Israeli-Australian Coalition alone, accounting for 13% of that team's total losses. These statistics have caused the pole-socking league to reconsider their regulations concerning safety for underage players. Much of the concern was directed at standard pole-socking equipment, which is rarely suited to younger and smaller players. For example, in the standard dune buggie employed by the Coalition it is impossible to see over the steering wheel and reach the pedals at the same time for anyone under 4' 6". Many preteen players have complained of the difficulty of driving while keeping an eye on the terrain, which is essential for navigating across steep sand dunes, approaching tornados to assist teammates, and dodging the many mines and traps placed by each team. Others have raised concerns about the effects of all the various gasses, vapours and chemical/biological agents on developing children. No extensive data has been gathered to indicate any specific effects as of yet, but several studies on the matter have been planned. In an attempt to address these issues, Nezumi, representitive of the Pole Socking League had this to say:
"It has come to our attention that there have been growing concerns about the safety of Pole Socking for younger participants. To this end, we are implementing the following measures: Booster seats will be available for all dune buggy, seated turret, and Tactical Command Chairs. A new range of shorter and more light weight mallets will be legalised for certain age ranges. All VTOL aircraft are off limits to pilots too short to effectively fly them. Helmets are required when tornado boosting for all players under the age of 18. Child safety caps will be applied to all bottles of Plasma Pills. All doomsday devices will require adult supervision to construct and operate. All players under the age of 18 are required to wear gas masks at all times in jungle environments.
All new equipment, and equipment modification is scheduled to be implemented by the end of this summer.
We hope that these measures will contribute to a safer and more enjoyable game for everyone. Thank you"
Yuki Nakamura, of the Young Womens Cyclone Association (YWCA), an Australian branch
of the Israeli-Australian Coalition is seen here testing out her new gas mask.
We here at polesocking.com will keep an eye on the changes these new policies affect, so stay tuned!
-Smith Johnson Williams, Columnist
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