Portable basketball goals and wall-mounted backboards are a common feature in driveways and backyards across the United States, a testament to the sport’s immense popularity with kids and adults of all ages.
Yet while the thought of endless days spent shooting hoops with friends and family certainly has its appeal, too many consumers are unaware of the genuine hazards these products can pose, especially if they’re low-quality or defectively designed or manufactured.
In fact, in just the last several months, two popular brands – Spalding and Goalsetter – were forced to recall thousands of portable and wall-mounted basketball goals due to dangerous defects linked to several injuries, including a child’s death.
Our Child Injury Lawyers have extensive experience representing infants, toddlers, children, and teenagers injured and tragically killed due to defective and recalled products, earning national recognition for their aggressive pursuit of justice on behalf of kids and their families. If your son or daughter was hurt because of a recalled Spalding portable basketball goal or Goalsetter wall-mounted backboard, please call our law firm toll-free at 877-875-2927 to speak with an attorney and learn more about your legal rights.
Goalsetter Wall-Mounted Basketball Backboards Linked to Child’s Death
In October, Goalsetter Systems recalled around 18,000 wall-mounted basketball goals that could unexpectedly detach from the wall and fall to the ground, placing players at serious risk of injury and death.
According to the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC), Goalsetter has received four reports of the backboards unexpectedly detaching, including a 2018 incident that resulted in the death of a 14-year-old boy from Granger, Indiana. In one of the other incidents, an individual sustained a severe facial injury, and in another, a person suffered a fractured leg.
This recall involves all Goalsetter Adjustable and Fixed Wall Mount Series and GS Baseline Series 72-inch, 60-inch, 54-inch, and 48-inch wall-mounted goal systems. The basketball backboards have a white logo (consisting of a white basketball to the left of the word “Goalsetter”) printed in the lower left corner.
The recalled basketball goals were sold at SCHEELS and basketball equipment stores nationwide from November 1999 through June 2022. They could also be purchased online at amazon.com, www.dickssportinggoods.com, www.walmart.com, and www.target.com. Depending on the model, the wall-mounted backboards sold for between $919 and $2,250.
The CPSC and Goalsetter are urging consumers to stop using the recalled basketball goals immediately and contact the company for either:
- Free removal of the basketball goal with a full refund, or
- Free inspection of the installed wall-mounted basketball goal and free installation of an additional safety bracket.
Goalsetter is also contacting all known purchasers.
Consumers seeking additional information may call the company at 855-951-7460 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or visit www.goalsetter.com and click on “SAFETY & RECALL” at the top of the page.
Spalding Portable Basketball Goals Prone to Weld Failures
Just one month earlier, Russell Brands recalled more than 13,000 Spalding Momentous EZ Assembly Portable Basketball Goal due to a defective weld that could allow the backboard to detach from the pole and fall, potentially causing players to suffer impact-related injuries.
According to the CPSC, Russell Brands has received 26 reports of weld failures, including three incidents where backboards separated from the pole. One injury involving the backboard hitting a consumer on the shoulder/upper torso and another in which a consumer was hit on the head have also been reported.
The recalled goals have either a 50-inch or 54-inch acrylic clear backboard with a visible “H-frame” providing support behind the backboard, or a 54-inch acrylic clear backboard with aluminum trim, but no H-frame. All backboard styles are attached to a black metal pole with a black metal arm. “Spalding” is printed on the front of the black base, and “6E” is molded on the back. The numbers 1010, 1011, or 1012 are printed to the right of the CAUTION statement on the front of the backboards.
The recalled Spalding basketball goals were sold nationwide at Academy and SCHEELS stores and at www.Spalding.com and www.Amazon.com from May 2021 through April 2022 for about between $400 and $600.
Consumers should immediately stop using the portable basketball goals and contact Spalding to arrange for removal of the original arm and install a new arm on the goal system. Spalding is also contacting all known purchasers.
Consumers seeking additional information can call Spalding directly at 1-800-558-5234 between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. CT Monday through Thursday, and Friday from 8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. CT. They can also visit www.spalding.com and click on “Recall” at the bottom of the home page under SUPPORT.
Purchasing a Portable Basketball Hoops or Wall-Mounted Goal? What to Know.
A portable hoop or wall-mounted backboard can seem like an ideal solution if your home doesn’t allow for the permanent installation of a basketball goal. But every year, several children are killed and many are injured when portable hoops topple over or wall-mounted backboards detach and fall to the ground.
If you’re considering purchasing a portable basketball goal for your family, here are some considerations you should keep in mind:
- Sturdiness and Durability: Lightweight, portable hoops may tip over during aggressive play. Choose a heavy portable goal that seems durable and sturdy, and opt only for those equipped with a complete set of the back tie-downs required to meet NCAA competition standards.
- Range of Adjustability: Look for adjustable hoops that allow you to set a custom height based on the age and ability of the players. You’ll also want to ensure that adjusting the rim height is easy and doesn’t require using a special tool or stand.
- Ease of Portability: Look for features like easy-glide wheels that will facilitate portability by an adult (a child should never attempt to move a portable hoop).
If you’re leaning toward purchasing a wall-mounted backboard, you need to think about the following:
- Structural Integrity of the Wall: The wall where the backboard will be mounted must be strong enough to handle the backboard’s weight and withstand physical pressure. A flat surface will ensure that the goal is tightly attached to the wall.
- Invest in Professional Installation: A professional installer can determine the safest anchoring system for your wall’s construction. They’ll also know how to locate and avoid electrical wires and other unseen hazards during installation.
- Overhang: Roughly 2 to 4 feet of overhang provides a good balance of safety, stability, and performance. Anything less than that will make it harder to move under the hoop, increasing the risk of collisions and injuries.
- Wall Padding: Installing wall padding and other protective accessories will help ensure players remain safe from severe injuries in the event of collisions.
Preventing Other Basketball Injuries
Did you know that 375,000 children end up in emergency rooms each year after playing basketball? According to one recent study, basketball-related traumatic brain injuries among children rose 70 percent from 1997 to 2007, even though the total number of basketball injuries declined during that time.
While investing in a well-constructed, safely designed portable hoop or wall-mounted backboard is essential; there are many other ways your child can become injured while playing the nation’s most popular sport. To help prevent those injuries, you should also be sure that your son or daughter:
- Wears protective equipment: While helmets won’t work for basketball, mouth guards and eye protection are essential for shielding the eyes and teeth. Ankle and knee braces or taping can protect a child’s vulnerable joints.
- Warms up: According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, cold muscles are more prone to injury. Kids should always take time to warm up and stretch before play starts.
- Practices good technique.When jumping, children should be coached to land on a bent knee rather than a straight one.
- Hydrates before, during, and after playing.Even mild levels of dehydration can hurt athletic performance.
- Plays nice. Collisions are a major cause of traumatic brain injuries in basketball. To avoid them, discourage kids from engaging in rough or overly aggressive play.
Finally, be aware that playing with a head injury increases the likelihood of permanent brain damage. Everyone — parents, coaches, and players– must know the signs of concussion. The adults in charge must also be willing to bench any player who suffers a blow to the head.
Contact an Experienced Child Injury Lawyer
Child Injury Lawyer Jeffrey Killino believes kids hurt by defective sports equipment and their families deserve compensation for their pain and suffering. If your son or daughter sustained a severe or fatal injury because of a recalled Spalding portable basketball hoop or Goalsetter wall-mounted backboard, our child injury law firm is ready to help you pursue a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit against those responsible. Please don’t hesitate to contact us at 1-877-875- 2927.