Ask the Official: What do you do if an on-ice official doesn’t show up or becomes incapacitated and can’t finish game?

By Dave Zednik, IHOA Rules & Ethics Chairman

QUESTION: What is the proper procedure for Officials to follow if a regularly scheduled On-Ice Official either does not show up for a game or becomes incapacitated and cannot finish the game?

ANSWER: Arrangements should be made, whenever possible, to be able to start or continue the game in a reasonable time frame while following the guidelines outlined in the rule. Rule Reference 501(d).

The first step is to attempt to locate USA Hockey registered officials who are either in the arena, or live close by, that may be able to step in and work the game.

Ideally, identifying two registered officials who can work would allow the game to be played using the two official system. However, the game could be played, or continue, provided there is one registered official present and both coaches have agreed to play the game under these circumstances.

The alternative is for each coach to agree to appoint a Referee and then appoint one player from each team to serve as linesman.

If an official is injured after the game has started and cannot continue, the game will continue under the same guidelines outlined above or by procedures mandated by the local governing body of the teams involved. This may include continuing the game with one referee and one linesman.

Categories: Ask the Official, Hockey Headlines

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