Stonewall Arena paints orange 'look-up line' to warn hockey players

The Stonewall Arena hopes a band of pale orange paint will help prevent life-threatening injuries during hockey games.

Orange zone warns hockey players to look-up and be aware of potential dangers

Stonewall Arena introduced an orange look-up line this year to warn players they are approaching the boards. (Brett Chatfield)

The Stonewall Arena hopes a band of pale orange paint around the rink will help prevent life-threatening injuries during hockey games.

In August, the arena painted an orange "look-up line" around the ice, 42 inches wide, to alert players when they are approaching the boards. Since then, it's caused quite a stir.

"It might look a little weird for the first bit but if everyone starts looking at it and asking questions at least it's doing its job," said Stonewall's supervisor for parks and the arena, Brett Chatfield.

The idea to paint a look-up line was suggested to Chatfield from the general manager of the Stonewall Jets, Ralph Nespor, who saw it used in Bottineau, North Dakota

Colliding into boards is one of the culprits behind severe head injuries, according to the Canada Safety Council. In November, Manitoba's junior hockey community was rocked by a fall into the boards that paralyzed 20-year-old player, Braden Pettinger.

When players are pushed into boards, here's a good chance they can get more injured than if they're hit on open ice, said Chatfield.

The look-up line does two things, he said. It warns players with the puck to pay attention to hits from behind and it tells other players, if they hit a someone in this area, the player may get really hurt.

"It helps the refs and coaches for teaching the kids how to hit properly too," Chatfield added.
A poster displayed at Stonewall Arena. (Brett Chatfield)


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.