“FREE” by Nick Nicholson


Now there’s a word that gets people excited. We see it everywhere in advertising and more often than not, we find there’s always a catch. Buy this one at an extremely inflated price and you get that one for “Absolutely Free”. Yeah, sure! Most notably, searching for “free” things on the Internet, one usually finds it’s a free trial of something or “free” access to the location where you can buy something. Seldom, do you find that something is actually “free”.

There is another saying out there and that’s “You only get what you pay for!”  That one, I find, can be the most frustrating. Our world seems to be flooded with scams of every nature. Even though you’re quite willing to pay for the knowledge that will enhance your mind, you seldom get the whole picture. Generally, you receive an introduction to something and if you want more, you have to buy the next segment followed by another, and another, and another.

It’s sort of like fishing. The word “free” is the hook and once you’re “hooked”, it becomes a license to steal from you. So often that word is attached to something manipulating and if we go for it, we ended up feeling cheated which is not good for our self-esteem. No wonder our population is steeped in depression, self-doubt and a lack of confidence.

It took me quite a few years jumping from job to job but I finally

Nick with Awards

found a profession that is as close, in my opinion, as you can get to free sharing. That is the “safety world”. In the transportation sector especially, what you teach others bounces back because the driver that learns the safety technique can be the same driver facing you on the road.

Yes, there are thousands of organizations who will sell you abstract safety courses and programs, safety equipment, safety methods and so on but on the whole, the people within the safety industry are the most willing to share, of any group I’ve ever come across. They are a different breed.

Although we all have to make a living somehow and at a level where we can survive and accumulate a few of the niceties of life, the people who generate toward the safety world seem to be generous with information to a fault. At the same time, you can get the greatest feeling of accomplishment when you see evidence of success in programs you’ve shared. There is no greater feeling than realizing that someone that you’ve touched has avoided death or serious harm by the knowledge that you’ve shared. It doesn’t come back to you often but when it does, you just want to stick your chest out with pride. It’s a wonderful feeling of triumph.

So what does your career path hold for you? It doesn’t matter what “dead-end” job you are now involved in, safety is part of what you are doing.  You can take the experience of what you are doing now, add to it what experience you’ve had in the past and sift out the safety aspects.  With a little training, some deep thinking, and some drive, you can find the path to becoming a safety practitioner that can take you all over the world. One thing that has happened over the past twenty years or so is that “safety” has finally become an “in-demand”, respectable profession. You will find that any successful company or organization has a real safety element.  It seems the more committed to safety an organization is, the more successful they are, from the giants of industry to the smallest of operations. Some have paid dearly to reach that understanding.

If you happen to be in or are interested in, the transportation field, I have found it a great region of safety to get into. There are a great number of specialties within safety that you can aim for and they touch upon just about any profession you can think of.

One of my greatest delights working within the transportation safety area was joining an organization called Fleet Safety Council. I’ve just received a certificate showing that I have been a part of that organization for the past 29 years and I have to say that a great amount of my learning has come directly through FSC. You know what?  It was FREE! Yeah, every once in a while it costs you a couple of bucks but for the most part, there was no cost besides my time and commitment.

If you live in Ontario, are involved in the transportation business, then the Fleet Safety Council organization is open to you and is as close to “free” as you can find. A very small membership fee once a year, some dedication on your part and you are on your way to your own safer world. The people here are willing to share and there is an answer for everything.

Where can you join? Go to: https://fleetsafetycouncil.com/ or, if you’re in the Hamilton-Niagara area, our own Chapter, meets once a month right off the QEW in Grimsby which is:  https://hamiltonniagarafleetsafetycouncil.com/


Keep your people safe.
The beauty of life is in your hands.

About the Author

Nick Nicholson, is a retired safety practitioner who spent many years researching the human behaviour factors of driver and pedestrian actions. Specifically, he spent 25 of those years devoted to highway crash investigations, regulatory compliance, the design, implementation and presentation of safety programs. Nick enjoyed many hours presenting professional driver enhancement training to adult participants.

As a long time Fleet Safety Council Member (1988) and the Founding Chair (1992-1995) of Council’s Hamilton-Niagara Chapter, he presents his opinions in hopes of improving the safety knowledge of readers. Nick is a firm believer in human advancement through positive attitudes, solution thinking and the understanding that the beauty of life is always in your hands.

Old Uncle Nicky’s Opinions are his own and in no way reflect the opinions of Fleet Safety Council

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.