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Bonebrake Supports New Paintball Safety Talk Program

Dan Bonebrake of Diablo Direct West recently announced his decision to sponsor and support a new safety program which is being presented at all of the high schools and junior high schools in his native state of Oregon.  The program is the brain child of Bob "Sarge" Shano, a 14 year veteran of the sport whose reputation as a safety fanatic goes without saying.

These safety talks are being presented personally by select members of  the Gladiators paintball team and by Sarge himself.  "We teach the class mainly to kids 13 to 17 years old," Sarge said.  "The vast majority of them play in the backyard or a vacant lot somewhere.  Few have ever been to a commercial paintball field.  Most purchased their paintball gun and supplies from a major retail store."

According to Sarge, it takes about an hour and a half to cover all of the material presented during the lesson, which is typically broken down into two 45 minute periods, each conducted on separate school days.  "We talk to the kids about everything from barrel plugs to velocity limits," he explained.  "These kids don't get to see any of the articles about safety in the paintball magazines because hardly any of them ever read the magazines, so they really have a lot to learn.  You wouldn't believe the stuff they do when they're out there playing renegade paintball.  It's unreal.  Almost every one of them admitted to regularly taking their goggles off before the game ends and other times when there are still loaded paintball guns all around them.  In most cases, none of them has ever heard of, let alone ever used a chronograph.  There is almost never an adult present.  

The purpose of the program is to educate kids about the pitfalls of the game so they can avoid being hurt.  Although the safety talks are mainly for the kids' benefit, Bonebrake also offers a variation of the program to interested civic and parent organizations.  "I am totally committed to this program," he declared.  "The more we do today to keep the game safe, the more we do to guarantee its future."

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