Holiday Safety

Gatherings during COVID-19

This holiday season poses additional safety concerns due to COVID-19. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides considerations for small gatherings to help slow the spread of COVID-19. Please note that this does not replace any regional, state, or federal health and safety laws, rules, or regulations concerning small gatherings.

The CDC also shares other holiday activity ideas to try this season:

  • Schedule time to share a meal together virtually.
  • Share recipes and have people share the dishes they prepared.
  • Watch parades, sports, and movies at home.
  • Find a fun game to play.
  • Shop online sales.
  • Use contactless services such as curbside pick-up.
  • Shop in open air markets staying 6 feet away from others.
  • Safely prepare traditional dishes and deliver them to family and neighbors in a way that does not involve contact.
  • Participate in a gratitude activity.


  • Wear a face cover / mask.
  • Stay at least 6 feet away from others who do not live with you.
  • Wash your hands – scrub with soap for at least 20 seconds.


National Handwashing Awareness Week is
December 1-7, 2020

Wash your hands with soap and water whenever possible. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Keep in mind that hand sanitizer does not eliminate all types of germs such as Cryptosporidium, norovirus, and Clostridium difficile. For more information, visit the CDC website.


Holiday Lab Reminders
Before you leave for the holidays, keep these green holiday tips in mind: 

  • Turn off all computers, lights, and laboratory equipment.
  • Close chemical fume hood sashes.
  • Dispose of all chemical, biological, and radioactive waste.
  • Provide staff with emergency or alternate contact information.


The National Safety Council reminds us to Stay Safe this Holiday Season 

Basic precautions for traveling, decorating, preparing food, and gifting age appropriate toys are important to ensure a safe holiday season.


  • Keep an emergency preparedness kit.
  • Avoid drowsy driving.
  • Practice defensive driving.
  • Avoid distractions such as cell phones.


  • Keep decorations such as trees at least 3 feet away from any heat sources.
  • Use indoor lights indoors and outdoor lights outdoors.
  • Replace light sets with broken, frayed, or loose connections.

Food Preparation:

  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Keep raw meat away from fresh produce.
  • Use a food thermometer to make sure meat is cooked to a safe temperature.
  • Refrigerate hot or cold leftover food within two hours of being served.


  • Avoid toys with small parts for children under 3.
  • Avoid toys that must be plugged into an electrical outlet for children under 10.
  • Be cautious of toys with button batteries or small magnets.

To learn more about holiday safety, visit the National Safety Council website.


Winter Fire Safety

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and US Fire Administration (USFA) reminds us to Put a Freeze on Winter Fires. Common culprits of home fires include space heaters, candles, and lighting equipment. Carbon monoxide incidents are also common during the winter months from using heating and cooking equipment that burn fuel.

Watch these short videos to learn how to prevent home fires:

Have a safe and happy holiday season,



Deck the Halls Fire Safety video source link:

Yule Light Up My Life Dan Doofus video source link:

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