The BCHL announced that it will have stiffer penalties for major infractions in the upcoming season. Jim Bailey photo.

BCHL introduces changes to make game safer

The BCHL announced more severe consequences are in store for major infractions next season

The BCHL will see stiffer penalties for major infractions.

The league held its Annual General Meeting (AGM) over a series of video conference calls in the last month and the league’s Board of Governors has approved several new initiatives and protocols for the 2020-21 season.

Earlier this month, the BCHL appointed a Return-to-Play Task Force which is responsible for outlining several different scenarios on how and when the league can resume its schedule, while working with the Provincial Health Authorities to develop return to play guidelines and safety measures.

In addition, the AGM agenda also addressed on-ice infractions and making the game a safer and more skilled affair.

The newly formed Department of Player Safety, comprised of head official Brad Lazarowich and BCHL executive director Steven Cocker, will monitor all penalties to ensure the correct call was made on the ice, and new changes enforced.

Fighting Majors: The BCHL is imposing stricter penalties for fighting next season. In 2020-21 a player will receive supplemental discipline on their second fight. The previous standard gave players four fights prior to receiving any further supplemental discipline. There will be a zero-tolerance stance on instigator and aggressor penalties, both receiving suspensions on first offence and will significantly increase on accumulation.

“As a leader of developing college-bound student athletes, we feel this is a progressive step for the BCHL,” said Cocker. “The safety of our players is an integral part of any decision we make as a league and a stronger stance on fighting and zero-tolerance on instigators and aggressors is a great step forward.

“The game continues to evolve and move in the direction of speed and skill and we want to be on the forefront of that movement,” said Cocker.

Charging Rule 6.3: The league has also implemented specific wording to address hits that come from outside of a player’s line of sight. Any hit that occurs from a player’s blindside, meaning outside a 90-degree angle of their line of vision, with significant force, will be called charging.

Slew-Footing: The BCHL has also imposed stricter penalties on slew-footing. It will now be categorized with clipping and kneeing as an accumulation category. Any player who commits a slew foot will be assessed a four-minute double minor penalty or a match penalty, depending on the severity of the incident as determined by the referee. An automatic match penalty will be assessed when an injury occurs due to a slew foot.

Portable Defibrillators: It will now be mandatory for each team to have a portable defibrillator on hand in case of an emergency involving a player or team staff member. Trainers will be required to carry one for every game, practice and team event.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Fort Shepherd Conservancy opens for limited use

Limited recreational use is permitted including fishing, hiking, horseback riding, and picnicking.

Rolling through summer at the Trail Sk8 Park

A helmet and adherence to pandemic precautions is all that’s required for the free sessions

New seniors care facility in Nelson to be built at Mount St. Francis site

Mount St. Francis hasn’t been in use since 2005

The Editor’s Desk: Coronavirus classic cinema

Some familiar films would look a lot different if they’d been made during a time of COVID-19

B.C. records 62 new COVID-19 cases, two deaths since Friday

Province has just over 200 active cases

Commercial huckleberry harvesting restricted in Kootenays

The province of B.C. has banned commercial-scale picking from July 15 to October 15

Canadians torn on scaling back COVID-19 benefits to save money: poll

Of those surveyed, 78 per cent said they were worried about the size of the deficit

‘Trauma equals addiction’: Why some seek solace in illicit drugs

Part 2: Many pushed into addiction by ‘toxic stress,’ says White Rock psychologist

Hotel rooms for B.C. homeless too hasty, NDP government told

Businesses forced out, but crime goes down, minister says

Wage subsidy will be extended until December amid post-COVID reopening: Trudeau

Trudeau said the extension will ‘give greater certainty and support to businesses’

B.C. government prepares for COVID-19 economic recovery efforts

New measures after July consultation, Carole James says

Tree planters get help with COVID-19 protective measures

Ottawa funds extra transportation, sanitizing for crews

Most Read