Look-Up Line

June 11, 2014The Thomas E. Smith Foundation (TESF) is proud to announce that all levels of NCAA and USA Hockey have recognized the Look-Up Line (LUL). The Look-Up Line, is a warning track colored in pantone 151C safety orange that extends 40 inches in width around the circumference of a rink to decrease the risk of catastrophic head and spinal cord injuries. The TESF is thrilled with the level of engagement from hockey executives, officials, coaches, players, parents and rink owners, as there are currently over 100 rink commitments in 15 different states to install the LUL by Oct. 1, 2014.

This past weekend at the USA Hockey Annual Congress in Colorado Springs, CO the following motion was issued by USA Hockey:

USA Hockey recognizes the public interest on the use of a “Look-Up Line” painted on the ice surface in an effort to promote player safety. Ice facilities that wish to employ a “Look-Up Line” are permitted to do so and are encouraged to report any pertinent observations to the USA Hockey Look-Up Line Safety Task Force.  Look-Up Line colored a Pantone 151 [c] Safety Orange, is to be painted around the entire circumference of the ice surface. The Look-Up Lineis to extend 40 inches in width from the bottom of the kick plate of the boards.”

Look-Up Line Diagram

The diagram above will be attached to this motion along with any literature referencing the LUL. The TESF is pleased with the number of people who have taken action and are interested in making hockey safer with the implementation of the LUL. Be sure to stay tuned for its official roll out in the upcoming 2014-2015 season!



In addition to the recognition of the LUL, USA Hockey has assembled the Look-Up Line Safety Task Force. This carefully selected task force will be co-chaired by TESF co-founder Thomas E. Smith and the highly respected Dr. Michael Stuart. The committee will also consist of members:

Look Up Line Safety Task Force

(Left to right: Dr. Michael Stuart, Thomas Smith, Dr. Carolyn Emery, Dr. Alan Ashare)


Co-founder Thomas Smith believes with the NCAA and USA Hockey support of the LUL, hockey is one step closer to becoming a safer game. Smith noted in his keynote speech to USA Hockey on June 5, 2014, “It’s not about a line, it’s about a life… I don’t want what happened to me to happen to anyone else… and if we can prevent that, then why not? ”



If you would like to install the LUL in your ice hockey rink, or for more information about Thomas’ story or the Thomas E. Smith Foundation* please contact info@justcureparalysis.org or visit the TESF website.

*The Thomas E. Smith Foundation believes in a progressive approach towards dealing with spinal cord injuries. The core mission of the organization is to provide those affected by and living with paralysis financial resources to support daily necessities not covered by insurance. These resources include but are not limited to: physical therapy, adaptive rehabilitation equipment, transportation, home modifications, and private nursing care. Additionally, the TESF fully supports innovative and preventative programs that decrease the risk of catastrophic head, neck and spinal cord injuries in ice hockey.