Danger zone

THE Lower Clarence Cricket Association is preparing for another big season, but has raised concerns about the proximity of a skate park to Yamba Oval.

The skate park, which was completed in June, used to be about 30-40 metres away from the boundary fence.

Association president Rob Hodson said the distance had been reduced to about 15 metres and the park was placed directly behind the sight screen.

This creates a potential issue for the cricketers and the skaters alike.

"When they started, it was pretty far away - now its only 10 to 15 metres," Hodson said.

"You'll shake your head when you see it. It's unbelievable."

With the first ball of the season just a month away, Hodson's biggest concern is the users of the skate park.

"The skaters aren't going to be concentrating on the cricket," he said.

"What happens when a ball flies or bounces over the fence?

"No one will see it until it's too late."

A major concern about the situation is over liability - something that Hodson isn't sure about.

"If someone is using the skate park during the cricket and gets hit by a ball, who's liable?" he said.

"We still aren't sure and it's one of the biggest problems we may have."

He said the association had contacted the North Coast Cricket Council seeking a recommendation.

Association secretary Darrell Simmons echoed Hodson's thoughts about the park.

"It's ridiculous," Simmons said.

"A member raised it at a meeting in August and we're attempting to address the safety concerns.

"I just can't believe they put it behind the sight screen."

Thankfully for cricket fans, there will be no impact on the start of the season, but it's an issue that needs to be sorted out sooner rather than later.

"Before it was put in, the sporting clubs that actually use the ground weren't consulted," Hodson said.

"We're considering an extension to the sight screen or even a large net to prevent anything from happening.

"But we'll continue our talks with council and hopefully have it sorted out before the season starts."

The association will hold its annual meeting on September 11, where the format of this year's first and second grade competitions will be up for discussion.

First grade will consider two-day games, while second grade hopes to keep the Twenty20 format.



WHEN: 7.30pm, September 11.

WHERE: Maclean Bowling Club

WHO: All interested persons are invited to attend and contribute to the formation of a committee for season 2012-13.

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