Are you protected for hockey season?

Somewhere in Canada, two friends, Bob and John, arrive at their local community’s sporting facility to play a game of squash.
Other parents and caregivers are arriving with children for their swimming lessons while the weight room has many patrons working out. Two hockey arenas that are connected are ready to go for the next game.
As Bob and John prepare to enter the squash court, they put on their approved eye protection, which is mandatory (safety first!) If you don’t comply with the eye protection policy/rule, you don’t play squash—it’s that simple.
Moving on to the hockey arenas, two teams are warming up for their game in “Arena A.” All of the players, who are children, are wearing their PPE (personal protective equipment), including full-face masks.
The other arena, “Arena B,” is starting to fill up with players in anticipation for their weekly hockey scrimmage. Some of the players are wearing protective visors, but the majority of them don’t have any type of face protection.
Why? The reason is simple—there is no mandatory policy/rule that requires them to do so. And, of course, all of them are adults.
In another part of the country, a hockey game is in progress. It is Day One of the NHL season in Toronto and the hockey arena has many fans, including inspiring children who dream of one day playing in the NHL.
Back at “Arena A,” one of the children is hit with a puck in the face, or full-face mask so to speak. No injuries are sustained and the game continues.
In “Arena B,” one of the adult players takes a stick to the face. The player is taken to the hospital and receives multiple sutures to close the cut above his eye.
He is very lucky—a few years ago, another player lost his sight in one eye.
Back in Toronto, a key player (Mats Sudin) suffers a fractured orbital bone over his left eye when a puck hits him. This player—an important investment—as well as many others have refused to wear a protective visor.
In March, 2000, Leafs’ defenceman Bryan Berard lost the sight in his right eye when he was struck with a stick.
Injuries such as these are predictable—and preventable. Protect yourself and others. Protect your investment. In a blink of an eye, you could lose your eye!
Take responsibility for your health and safety now. Take care of what you have!
Safety—it starts with you!
Tyler J. Moffitt served with the OPP, and is a volunteer firefighter and emergency responder.

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