The synthetic turf industry has come under fire for using ground black rubber as an infill product. A recent Connecticut state funded study on crumb rubber found “health risks “are not elevated from playing on these fields.” The study did find that higher contaminant levels at an indoor field suggests ventilation needs.” Source – The Redding Pilot.
The study was conducted by the University of Connecticut finding no serious adverse effects of using the black crumb rubber. However, various groups are still concerned as the study also indicates that use in enclosed areas may require adequate ventilation. We ask the following question: Ventilation from what hazardous substance?
While consumers continue to question the use of the crumb rubber infill in synthetic lawns, many turf installers are scrambling to find another product, safer and less questionable in the consumers eyes. One company, based out of Ohio, is providing a viable alternative. FlexSand is a single grain of sand coated in an FDA approved for consumption polymer. FlexSand provides the shock absorbency of rubber but poses zero health hazards. FlexSand is cool to the touch and in outdoor applications, the infill is 23 degrees cooler than the black crumb rubber infill.
FlexSand is not available from just any installer. Typically, distributors are given rights to exclusively sell the infill within a given territory. So if you are looking for FlexSand, call up the company and ask for the nearest distributor in your local area.