News Release

US Department of Labor urges employers to follow federal safety guidelines to protect workers from falls; delivery, warehouse hazards this holiday season

Recent death of worker hanging holiday lights in Ohio is a tragic reminder to stay safe

CHICAGO – To make sure the holiday season is truly joyful, the U.S. Department of Labor reminds employers and workers not to overlook workplace safety and health. 

For a sad reminder of how an on-the-job tragedy can leave families, friends and co-workers grief-stricken, look no further than Akron, Ohio, where a 25-year-old worker — hanging holiday lights on a backyard tree — suffered severe electrical shock injuries and later died after the fiberglass extension pole he used on Nov. 7, 2023, made contact with a high-voltage power line.

The department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration offers resources to help keep workers safe year-round and as they carry out an array of holiday-related jobs, from working with lighted decorations to serving customers in packed retail stores and from making rush deliveries to picking and packing orders in warehouses. 

“The holiday season is a time for celebration and reflection for many, but they are also occasions when employees face safety hazards found atop ladders or roofs putting decorations in place, in busy warehouses and retail stores meeting heightened customer demands, and working outdoors as winter approaches,” explained OSHA Regional Administrator Bill Donovan in Chicago. “To make the holidays happy for all, employers must stress workplace safety and health and train employees to prevent serious and fatal injuries.” 

To assist employers and workers, OSHA offers a timely video, “9 Tips to Protect Workers During the Holidays” and other information focused on keeping workers safe during the holiday season in retail, warehousing, delivery and other seasonal jobs, including special restrictions for young workers

OSHA’s stop falls website offers safety information and video presentations in English and Spanish to teach workers about fall hazards and proper safety procedures

Learn more about OSHA.


Occupational Safety & Health Administration
November 30, 2023
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Media Contact: Scott Allen
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Media Contact: Rhonda Burke
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