Tips for workplace holiday decorations

December 26, 2018

Multi racial business man and woman working together in modern cafe or restaurant. View from street through window glass.

Most holiday decoration safety tips deal with potential fire and injuries. For example, decorations hanging from fire sprinklers, or stacking anything closer than 18 inches to them, could stop them from working properly in an emergency. However, some other items to consider during the holiday season according to a risk advisor include:

  • Make sure newcomers know the lay of land, where to find what they need and what they’re supposed to do.
  • While you’re at it, train on lifting techniques. There may be some complaints, but some retraining is beneficial.
  • Use battery-operated candles – do not use any open flames.
  • Avoid placing paper decorations too close to a heat source or blocking exit signs or aisles.
  • Don’t overstock shelves.
  • Have safety checks at a minimum when opening and closing the store. Remember to turn off the decorations before you leave.


Electrical Safety

Extension cords and holiday lights deserve their own special section to avoid fires or electrocution. Extension cords are so often misused, overused or just too old.

  • Make sure all electrical items are lab-certified as safe.
  • Do not “daisy chain” extension cords. If one doesn’t reach, move the decorations.
  • Inspect lights, cords and fixtures for damage.
  • NEVER put a three-prong plug in a two-prong hole.
  • Keep all cords out of high-traffic areas, and don’t put them under rugs, carpets or furniture.
  • Do not nail or staple electrical cords. This could damage the insulation and cause issues.
  • Putting extension cords in walls or ceilings could cause them to overheat.


Food Safety

If there’s a potluck party, make certain all foods can be stored safely until it’s party time. Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold and put it all away within two hours. And as always, drink responsibly. For more food safety tips, visit


If you’d like more advice on workplace safety, contact Vanguard Resources.