A Dutch government public health organization has said it is safe to play football and other sports on artificial turf fields covered in rubber crumb. The National Institute for Public Health and the Environment published a report saying that the health risk from playing on such fields, which are common throughout the Netherlands and elsewhere as low maintenance alternatives to natural grass, is "virtually negligible."
The European Tyre Recycling Association (ETRA) has launched a campaign to refute 'allegations' about the impact of tyre rubber granulate used in sports fields. In recent years, it says, 'unfounded claims' have been made that recycled tyre rubber can harm those coming into contact with it while playing sports - in particular, those in goalkeeping roles. However, despite two decades of research into the subject funded by industry, governments and public interest groups, “there is no empirical research that links tyre rubber to cancer”, ETRA asserts.
A coroner has connected the death of a former worker at Goodyear’s Wolverhampton factory to years of employment in tyre production. Fred Spruce died in November 2015, just weeks after he was diagnosed with bladder cancer. His 71-year-old widow Valerie has now instructed industrial disease lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to investigate how this happened.