One thing that always gets a prominent billing in our stories is about safety, and of course, related injuries to airsoft as we always stress again, again, and again that safety is paramount when playing airsoft. We also stress that while you can scrimp on costs on other aspects of airsoft, you should not but such a Scrooge when spending on safety equipment. Even with Marshals, chrono precautions, and safety instructions given to you by airsoft events organisers, at the end of the day, your safety equipment will determine how you will pull through in any game.
Mark Vaughan, M.D., aka Dr. Airsoft, has posted his review on airsoft eye injuries as based on available medical literature, which we assume are data compiled based on reports on eye injuries related to sports in the United States. In a nutshell, and we would like to commend airsoft players, is that there's no report in 2010 of anyone suffering from loss of vision caused by an airsoft eye injury.
Dr. Airsoft further explains the types of eye injuries that one can get when playing airsoft. The report is good reading that all airsoft players should download and read so we can all have a good understanding of such types of injuries and how we can respond in case one happens. He has compared airsoft injuries to paintball, and there's more prevalence of such injuries in paintball, as the mass of paintballs is much bigger as compared to 6mm bbs and to achieve the same effect, the airsoft plastic bb should be travelling at greater velocities. However, he states that a BB concentrates of one-ninth the size of the area impact of a paintball so it can cause much injury too, especially over 300fps.
Photo: An actual airsoft eye injury. You can read more about this incident and discussion at the Zero In forums. (Thanks sir Utorak for your story at the forums.)
Most of the eye injuries related to airsoft are about not wearing eye protection and the only single incident where one was wearing eye protection, was about a pair of sunglasses, which actually is not eye protection against flying objects such as BBs, and more of light glare protection. Though Dr. Airsoft did not state if the eye injuries in airsoft happened at legitimate airsoft game sites or events, or more on kids who were running unsupervised around the neighbourhood shooting each other without the proper airsoft protection as some previous reports about bb injuries are more about unsupervised children rather than adults.
Still, we should not be complacent in having a good record at preventing worse eye injuries, and we should always keep on investing in great protective gear for the eyes, and for the rest of the vulnerable parts of our bodies, and the search for the most comfortable eye protection still goes on.
We look forward to Dr. Airsoft's other reports or stories on airsoft-related injuries and how we can deal with such injuries. For the meantime, you can download his report here.