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updated: 5/4/2011 6:02 PM

'Zach's Law' progresses in state Senate

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  • Zach Tran

    Zach Tran

By Jeff Engelhardt

SPRINGFIELD -- A Vernon Hills family's fight for soccer goal safety took another step forward Wednesday after a Senate committee passed a measure that would require goals to be anchored.

The proposal, known as "Zach's Law," was named after Zach Tran, a boy who died in 2003 after an unanchored soccer goal tipped over and fell on him.

Because the legislation would make it illegal for retailers to sell soccer goals that are not tip-resistant, some senators were concerned the measure would ban plastic soccer goals and small goals for children from being sold.

Still, the plan was approved 9-0.

Sen. Terry Link, a Waukegan Democrat who sponsored the bill, said the issue has been discussed for years and all sides have finally overcome the legal barriers and come to an agreement it applies to only full-size goals.

"We had so many lawyers beat this up in the House," Link said. "Between the park districts and lawyers they have been through this with a fine-toothed comb."

Should the measure become law, it would be a major victory for Zach's father Jayson Tran, who has fought for improved soccer goal safety across the country with his organization, Anchored for Safety. The Vernon Hills engineer helped families pass similar laws in Arkansas and Wisconsin and is working on doing the same in New York.