Piedmont Triad, NC -- No sane parent would knowingly put their own kids in danger, but that may be exactly what you're doing if you drop your kids off at a soccer field and don't take the time to check if the goals are anchored to the ground.
A News 2 report explained last year the dangers unsecured soccer goals pose to kids.
At the time of the report, 36 kids had died from falling goal posts since 1979, according to Anchored For Safety, an organization which tracks the incidents.
Sadly, this year another death has been added to the list: 3rd grader Juan Escalera from Sampson County.
"My husband said that it happened in less than two minutes," said Maria Escalera, the 3rd grader's mother. "They yelled and screamed that something had happened to my son; that the goal thing had fallen on top of his head."
The Consumer Product Safety Commission also adds 200 children, on average, are seriously injured from soccer goal posts.
"Kids start playing in front of a goal, they start messing around, some of them might grab a hold of it, leans forward, pull the goal, the counter-balance kicks in and it turns over," the North Carolina Youth Soccer Association president, Keith Price, explained.
A quick Google search reveals that the dangers of soccer goals have been documented in local and national news for several years now, but the deaths and injuries are still happening.
In our research, it appeared the focus had mainly been placed on coaches and referees who are tasked with protecting these kids on the field.
However, we've also learned that the accidents are happening beyond organized league practices and games, as was the case in Juan Escalera's case.
He was playing at a field behind a mobile home park with his cousins.
Price says the responsibility falls on everyone - parents, coaches, neighbors - to stop the preventable accidents.
Soccer-mom Amanda Ruark shudders to think what could have happened to her kids and the 12,000 others who play for the Kernersville Soccer Association (KSA).
"It's just not safe for anyone. Even an adult player, it's not safe," Ruark said.
Ruark, who also works as the office administrator for KSA says goalposts at their off-site fields were being moved after-hours and left unsecured.
"I am a mother of two and it's dangerous. It really is," she said, getting emotional at the thought of something bad happening as a result.
The vandalism got to a point where KSA just decided to tear down the off-site goals.
"As a liability to us, we had to remove those goals. And for the safety of our kids in our community," Ruark said.
The only goals the KSA now keeps are those directly in front of their headquarters where they are secured with 10-20 pound sandbags and secured.
"You don't want a goal to fall on a kid, whoever you are," Ruark said. "They'll jump up and they'll hang on it and it'll tip over."
At a recent visit to Greensboro's Bryan Park, employees showed us how the J-hook, rebar stakes work. They are simply driven into the ground with the hook anchoring the goals.
The whole process to secure the goals with four or so stakes takes mere seconds and does a lot to protect children.
"Unfortunately, it seems that only when those deaths occur, does the awareness become great enough to talk about it. That can't be the norm," Price said.
The state referees association tasks their members and coaches with checking the goals before games and practices but Price believes the task should not only fall on them.
"Mom, dad, get out; it'll only take a couple of minutes to check the goal and see if they are anchored and if they are not, report it to the coach or whomever," he said.
"It's a major concern. And it won't stop until something happens and we hope it's not bad," Ruark added.
When you look at the statistics for soccer goalpost accidents, you could argue these accidents are not happening at an alarming rate but ask a parent and they'll say it should never happen even once when the solution is so simple.
Part of the problem may be that manufacturers don't typically sell the goal posts with the anchors.
If you happen to buy one for your backyard or a neighborhood soccer field, the North Carolina Youth Association recommends buying the rebar stakes instead of sandbags. However, sandbags are better than no anchor at all.