By: Luke Faulks, staff writer
A 2012 study by the Australian Monash University suggested that around 20 people in the area are hospitalized for umbrella-related injuries each year. While the study didn’t identify where most umbrella attacks occurred, through Peak field researchers, the newspaper determined at least 75% of these attacks occurred under awnings.
The same study suggested the incidence of hospitalizations for umbrella-related injuries was highest for children. “People who trundle under awnings with their umbrellas aloft are — unwittingly or perhaps, intentionally — putting Australian children in danger,” says SFU researcher Rainn Shields. “It’s contributing to a phenomenon academics are calling ‘the epidemic of umbrella assaults on Aussies under awnings.’”
Authorities, addressing those who open umbrellas under awnings, argue these people are “upsetting the flow of awning traffic, putting fellow pedestrians at risk, and just flat out hate children.” But if you think these attackers limit their self important umbrella dealings to the infants of down under, think again. SFU is just as susceptible to these assaults as any awning-based institution in a rainy city may be.
Due to campus shutdowns, people were, until now, safe in their homes. But now that students are maybe back on campus, unsuspecting awning enthusiasts risk becoming part of this epidemic of umbrella-related injuries more than ever.
Experts suggest that if you plan on spending time underneath awnings, it may be suitable to bring additional eye projection. Glasses, industrial eyewear, or, a full-on Iron Man helmet may be enough to prevent an outbreak of eye-stabbery. Additionally, experts recommend that children — in particular Australian children — should avoid awnings completely for the time being. Or, at the very least, until a government response to this immoral and senseless violence is enacted.
It is strongly encouraged readers stay vigilant under awnings and report any excessive umbrella usage to local authorities. Remember, these people could be anywhere and anyone — a friend, a family member, even you. No Australian child is safe. Do your part — help stop these (yet to be legally defined as “criminal”) crimes.