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New Crimson Cliffs High Turf Being Installed After Previous Surface Deemed ‘Unsafe’

WASHINGTON CITY, Utah — The turf field at a new southern Utah high school is being replaced after the original playing surface was deemed unsafe in September, forcing the school’s football and soccer teams to play all of their games on the road.

“We’re just so excited,” said Crimson Cliffs High School Principal Rusty Taylor while watching workers on the school’s football field Thursday. “It’s kind of given everybody something to rally around.”

Taylor was disappointed at the installation of the original turf, which was so poor the school’s football and soccer teams had to play their home games away from Crimson Cliffs High.

“We got ripples. Ripples in the carpet all right here. You can see as I step how much it moves,” said Taylor during an interview about the field in September.

He said the field was so bad with ripples, pebbles and places where the seams would just separate that officials were immediately worried about players’ safety.

“For a kid to get tackled on that, that’s going to cut open an elbow or a knee,” Taylor said while picking pebbles out of the old turf.

Workers remove a piece of the old turf, which was deemed unsafe in September.

This week, the Washington County School District hired a new company, Field Turf, to rip up the old surface and install a new one.

“We know they do good work. We feel very comfortable with the quality of the end product,” said Steven Dunham, communications director for the Washington County School District.

Field Turf has done three other fields for the district.

It begs the question, why didn’t the school district go with them in the first place instead of First Form, the other company originally hired to do the job?

“We wanted to try a new technology we thought would provide increased safety for the students,” Dunham said. “Unfortunately, that company didn’t deliver what they promised.”

District officials and that first company are still figuring out who owes who what contractually.

However, seeing the old field go means the new field will come in sooner than later.

“Go fast! Let’s get it done,” Taylor said with a laugh.

Old turf is rolled up at Crimson Cliffs High School in Washington, Utah.

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