We’re in the thick of the most popular sports tournament in North America – NCAA March Madness. All over BC households are outdoors and shooting hoops in their back alley or carport between games. While it’s great exercise, these home-recreation installations may increase the risk of damage to property and personal injury. Follow the steps below to prevent a flagrant foul against your homeowners insurance policy.
4 Tips to Preventing Property Damage and Personal Injury When Using Your Home’s Outdoor Basketball Hoop
Anchor the System Away from Neighboring Property
Portable basketball hoop systems are the most risky. If they are not properly anchored to the ground they can fall over when nudged by a vehicle, when battered by extreme winds, or when someone leaps up for an aggressive dunk. Not only does this create a risk of injury, a falling system can hit and damage cars, fences, landscaping, and a home exterior. In addition to properly anchoring the base, be sure to place the system away from neighboring properties and your own personal effects. Measure the height from the base to the top of the backboard and add about 3-feet to account for movement (from wind, etc.) from its grounded position. The maximum height of most portable installations will be approximately 3.65 meters (about 12-feet) so 4.5 meters (15-feet) away from property is a reasonable distance. Also protect your own vehicles by parking away from the hoop when playing a game.
Install a Basketball Return System
A missed shot can catapult a ball through a window or into exterior lighting, planters, screen doors, or into the faces of people passing by. Your neighbor’s chihuahua is also at risk of injury from a bad bounce. Who would have thought that a rebound could cause so much chaos? To mitigate the risk of injury and damage to property when playing we encourage you to invest in a basketball return and guard system. Most return systems are made for those who hit their shots, with a simple catch-and-return installation that is attached to the rim and under the net. But since you and your invitees haven’t been invited to play in March Madness it’s a safe bet that you’ll miss a few during your game of 21. Thankfully there are more robust systems that form a wide guard around the backboard so that even rebounds are caught and funneled right back in your direction. Search for “basketball hoop return and guard systems” on Amazon or your preferred online retailers and you’ll find affordable options that can save you in preventable claims.
Install a Barrier Around the “Court”
Even a hot-shot who never seems to miss can cause injury when shooting on a hoop over a sloping carport as the ball gets away and rolls into traffic. Those chasing down the ball (especially children) are at risk of being hit by a passing vehicle. Drivers swerving to miss a ball or player can slam into another vehicle or may deviate from the road and onto someone’s property. For this reason you should install the basketball hoop system on flat land. However, this is not always possible, so consider installing a barrier around the impromptu basketball court. If a permanent structure such as a fence is not viable you can find portable fencing and pet barriers at your home and garden retailer. During game-time place them in zones where loose balls may roll into traffic.
Update Your Homeowners Insurance Policy
Despite the measures above, there are number of instances where game-play and installation can lead to home insurance claims. Contact Park Insurance today to discuss what your existing policy may or may not protect, and ensure your policy provides a slam dunk in the form of better protection when playing Canada’s game.