WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - The safety of playing football has been questioned countless times. The debate has largely been driven by the many concussions suffered and their lasting impacts.
Hoggard High school says for their students, safety is more than just one priority.
“When you talk about student safety, that’s one through five on priority-- Then you get through some of the other stuff,” said Brad Lewis, J.T. Hoggard athletic director.
Virginia Tech is one of the leaders in helmet safety and testing.
Experts say a player takes 420 hits on average every season. Their testing and ratings take the impact numbers and into account and rank helmets based on data that predicts how many concussions a player might have. The highest rated helmet, the Schutt F7 LTD, averages less than one concussion for every 420 head collisions.
“It reduces your chance of getting a concussion or reduces the severity of the concussion," said Barry Miller, Director of outreach and business development."No helmet is going to prevent you from getting a concussion in all impact scenarios, but certainly, If I told you to run into a wall, the more padding or the better the padding is, it’s going to protect you.”
Many local schools like New Hanover, J.T. Hoggard, and Ashley high schools wear five-star helmets including the Riddell Revolution Speed and the Riddell SpeedFlex.
Laney High School’s helmets were not rated by VT researchers.
WECT has reached out to other counties about their helmets and are waiting to hear back.