Members of the Texas Queens softball team are crying foul over a recall of the light poles on their practice field.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission said more than 2,500 of the affected steel poles are installed around the country. Manufactured by the now-defunct Whitco Co. of Fort Worth, the poles can weigh one to four tons.
The team's practice field at the Cummings Recreation Center in Dallas is on a 159-page list of places across the country with the light poles. The poles are located at sports stadiums, recreation centers and parks.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission said the poles can crack and fall, as happened at Liberty Christian School in Argyle earlier this year.
“We have been practicing here for two to three years and never had any problems,” said Texas Queens coach Lucious Lyons.
According to the CPSC, there have been 11 pole collapses at stadiums and gymnasiums across the country within the past decade.
The commission said no one has been killed by the falling poles, but several schools and outdoor bleachers have been "significantly" damaged. In several cases, spectators had left the scene moments before a pole crashed.
“A lot of us bring our children and our grandchildren here, so that’s not really that safe for us,” Shelton said.
Shelton said the Texas Queens will probably look for another field to practice on.
The Southlake Carroll school district spent $289,00 inspecting and replacing its four Whitco poles at Dragon Stadium. Three of the poles showed signs of cracking in April 2009.
Parks and schools with Whitco-manufactured poles are urged to have their poles evaluated by an engineer.
"A visual examination with the naked eye or with a magnifier will not determine the extent of any cracking," the CPSC said in a news release.
The recall affects poles between 70- and 135-feet tall made of steel with a galvanized coating. They were manufactured between 2000 and 2005.
Because the Whitco Company is out of business, individual parks and schools are responsible for the cost of inspections and repairs.