A Special Christmas Message From Barry Spud

A Special Christmas Message From Barry Spud

I am going to wish you all a VERY ZERO MISERY XMAS!

BE CAREFUL! Christmas is an accident waiting to happen – it really should be banned!

We all know that Safety = Zero Harm. It therefore follows that Love = Zero Hate. So show your lack of hate by giving the gift of ZERO, the gift you give when you have nothing to give! Your family will surely realise how much you don’t hate them simply by how angry you are if they are injured.

Barry ‘Santa’ Spud’s Xmas Accident Tips and Facts for a Zero Misery Xmas:

  • 113.5% of injuries are caused by human error – these statistics rise dramatically over the Xmas holiday period when complacency sets in and Safety Officers are not around to control people.
  • Mistletoe is poisonous as its berries contain toxic proteins that slow the heart rate and can cause hallucinations, not to mention the diseases that are spread by indiscriminate kissing.
  • Children should avoid riding bikes and playing with toys until Boxing Day. This will allow proper reading of instructions, development of checklists, training, pre-start checks, calmer demeanor and supervision by responsible adults not affected by alcohol.
  • Place safety slogans and posters around the home and workplace to remind people to think, be vigilant, have common sense, choose safety first and be careful.
  • If you are expecting more then 5 guests at your house then make sure you register the gathering with authorities. All guests should undergo background checking, complete an online induction 7 days prior and a site specific induction upon arrival and sign-in. Random drug and alcohol testing should be undertaken throughout the evening.
  • Christmas is one of the most stressful times of the year. The combination of alcohol, relatives, lack of sleep and the stress of Christmas shopping can be too much for some people. Give the gift of zero instead.
  • Count your bandaids well prior to Xmas. Conduct a regular stocktake and tally against incident report book entries. Do not give gifts to those who report incidents and injuries – that is just plain selfish and ruins your metrics – they must be blamed, shamed and punished for their stupid choices! Give their gifts to those who chose safety and keep their mistakes to themselves.
  • Last Xmas, 197 carol singers were admitted to hospital with conditions ranging from dog bite to sore throats.  Carol singing must be done alone and indoors – preferably not at all. Loud singing is harmful to both singer and listener. If you are singing carols loud enough to be heard above the ambient traffic noise, you are breaching health and safety legislation – worse still – you may be blocking fire exits.
  • Secure all chimneys with locked steel grills, razor wire and CCTV cameras. Roof access without a permit or fall protection device is prohibited. Install warning notices and directional signage to ensure that all gifts are delivered to the front door, with appropriate paperwork and only between the hours of 9am and 4pm.
  • Make sure you buy children’s gifts for the correct age group and from reputable sources that comply with all relevant standards and regulations.


  • Experts predict around 80,000 will need hospital treatment over the festive season due to a lack of common sense. Falls, cuts and burns will account for most of the injuries.
  • Beware of trailing cables and wires in the rush to connect new gadgets and appliances, and always read instructions.
  • 20 people will be burned trying on new T-shirts and jumpers with a cigarette still in their mouths.
  • Make sure you buy enough batteries so you don’t have to remove them from smoke alarms. Three people die each year when testing if a 9v battery works on their tongue.
  • 26 people died from watering Christmas trees with the lights on in the past 10 years.
  • Hundreds of children will suffer eye injuries after poking themselves or others in the eye with new toys and glitter fragments in the eye from cards or craft activities.
  • The most common hospital treatments include children biting into glass baubles and adults falling from make-shift ladders such as tables.
  • More than 1,000 people are injured after falling while decorating the tree.
  • Do not be excited or rush when opening presents. Hundreds will cut themselves with knives while opening presents or using a sharp knife instead of a screwdriver.
  • Many people will break their arms pulling crackers.
  • 200 people will cut themselves due to not removing all the pins from a new shirt.
  • Falls are the most common accidents so try to keep clutter to a minimum. Make sure stairs are well-lit and free from obstacles, especially if you have guests
  • People are likely to burn themselves on the oven or cut themselves as they carve the turkey – particularly if they have been drinking alcohol.
  • 357 people were admitted to hospital in the last two years after opening bottles of beer with their teeth.
  • Food poisoning is always a worry at Christmas. Read the instructions on the turkey well. It takes hours to cook a turkey properly. If you don’t, you could contract salmonella poisoning, which can be life-threatening for vulnerable people.
  • Wear full PPE – Glasses, hard toed boots, gloves, hi-viz overalls, P2 dust mask and hearing protection at all times whilst preparing and cooking the Xmas meal.
  • If I hear of any reports of infants found tucked away in a manger with no crib for a bed, Child Services will be advised.
  • Employees should be advised that Equal Opportunities legislation prohibits any derogatory comment in regards to the redness of any reindeer’s nose. Further to this, exclusion of such reindeers from reindeer games will be considered discriminatory and disciplinary action will be taken against those found guilty of this offence.
  • Gifts of gold may breach company bribery and corruption policies so seek prior approval from your Manager. Gifts of exotic fragrances such as frankincense and myrrh are banned as they may cause allergies.
  • If anyone wishes to give me another lump of coal for my very large collection then please ensure it is accompanied by a Certificate of Analysis stating the crystalline silica and tar content.

I urge all families to conduct risk assessments (I can send you generic forms to modify) and take simple safety precautions to stop your Christmas and perfect ZERO record being ruined. Ho Ho Ho!

If you have any other Safety Crusader Xmas advice please leave below in the commentsSmile

Barry Spud

Barry Spud

Safety Crusader, Zero Harm Zealot, Compliance Controller and Global Pandemic Expert at Everything Safety
Barry Spud
What is a Safety Spud? Lets look at a few more spud head activities in risk and safety: 1. Coming on to site saying there is a safety issue when in fact there’s no such thing, it’s a political issue. 2. ‘Falling apart’ when people make choices that we think are stupid because they won’t do as we ‘tell’ them. Then we put on the angry face and think that overpowering others creates ownership. 3. Putting on the zero harm face, presenting statistics, knowing it has nothing to do with culture, risk or safety. 4. Putting on the superman (hazardman) suit and pretending to be the saviour of everything, this is good spud head cynic stuff. 5. Thinking that everyone else is a spud head except me. 6. Thinking there’s such a thing as ‘common’ sense and using such mythology to blame and label others. 7. Accepting safety policies and processes that dehumanize others. 8. Blaming, ego-seeking, grandstanding and territory protecting behind the mask of safety. 9. Thinking that risk and safety is simple when in fact it is a wicked problem. Denying complexity and putting your spud head in the sand. 10. Continually repeating the nonsense language and discourse of risk aversion that misdirect people about risk, safety, learning and imagination.

Do you have any thoughts? Please share them below