Teen blinded while mowing lawn pushes for safety glasses

A Pictou County teenager is hoping his unfortunate experience can serve as a safety warning for others.

Nolan Chisholm wants people to consider wearing safety glasses — not just on the job, but at home too.

The 16-year old Chisholm says he plans to always wear them while mowing the lawn.

He wasn‘t wearing them last year on Father‘s Day, and his life changed forever.

“A piece of debris came out from underneath the lawn mower and hit the house, ricocheted back into my left eye and ruptured my globe,” Chisholm said. “It was painless actually.”

He walked calmly walked into the house to tell his parents what had happened. They rushed him to the hospital, where they eventually learned the diagnosis.

“The surgeon said his eye was too badly damaged and that he would never see out of his eye again,” said Chisholm’s mom Brandy Simmons.

“I‘m not gonna lie, when any mom or dad, when they see their kid’s hurt, it‘s heartbreaking,” she said. “But when your child suffers a trauma like that, you kinda go into a different mode and it‘s just help him.”

Chisholm has decided to spread the word on the importance of safety glasses.

The CNIB says there‘s been an increase in eye injuries among young people between the ages of 15 and 24 and it‘s not just happening at the workplace.

“We‘re actually seeing two-thirds of eye injuries happening outside the workplace,” says Rhiannon Verran of the CNIB in Halifax. “It’s happening in the home when people are doing their do-it-yourself projects, you know, household repairs and things like mowing the lawn and doing yard work.”

Since the accident, Chisholm has shown wisdom and courage beyond his years, his mother says.

“I just wanted to raise awareness about eye safety and everything and just let other people know that it‘s a pretty serious thing,” he said. “It can happen in freak accidents like mine.”

With files from CTV Atlantic’s Dan MacIntosh.