Each Christmas season, there is a new, must-have gift. Chatty Cathy dolls, Cabbage Patch Kids and Tickle Me Elmo dolls were all at one point toys that caused parents to panic, children to hope and retailers to sweat. This year, instead of lining up for the latest fancy toy why not give the gift of farm safety to your family this year?
Of course, everybody likes to see something in the stocking on Christmas morning, a pair of socks, maybe a box of candy and a tube of toothpaste. Why not shake things up this year and include some personal protective equipment (PPE) or other safety-related items in that stocking for the farmer you love? These things don’t have to be expensive or very fancy, but basic items like a small first-aid kit, a flashlight or even some ear plugs all make great stocking stuffers.
Other PPE items that could be wrapped up for a loved one this year include:
- Work gloves.
- Safety goggles.
- ATV helmet.
- Fire-resistant coveralls.
- Fire extinguisher.
- Steel-toed boots.
When selecting these items, it’s important to think about a few factors. Fit, function and quality. Don’t cheap out! A good set of work gloves, that are of good quality, that fit well, is a better investment that a pair that will wear out or create a hazard because of a poor fit. When selecting a respirator, choose the right one for the right kind of job. Make sure any respirator that you purchase is certified by the Canadian Safety Association (CSA) or another recognized North American standards agency. The same can be said for fire extinguishers and helmets.
If you aren’t sure about what size or what the need might be, a gift certificate and a promise to go shopping with your loved one makes a great gift!
Some people have all the things they need, but some lack training. Why not give the gift of a first aid course? Register and attend as a family a course that helps everyone learn what to do in an emergency.
One of the most incredible gifts you can give this year isn’t a physical item at all. It can’t be wrapped or opened. It’s the gift of you. It’s the gift of a healthy and safe farm family. Make a promise to each other to assess the hazards on the farm. Make a pledge to talk to each other about the risks associated with those hazards. Work together to address the hazards. Your life and the lives of your family members are worth more than all the gifts in the whole world combined.
From all of us at the Canadian Agricultural Safety Association, we wish you a happy, healthy and safe holiday season and all the best in the New Year.
For more information about farm safety, please visit casa-acsa.ca.