Halloween is supposed to be a time of excitement and fun for kids, yet it's a sad fact that children are two times more likely to be hit and killed by a car on Halloween than on any other day of the year. That's a truly frightening statistic for parents, and it calls for immediate preventive action to keep our kids safe. So if your children are going out trick-or-treating this year, how will you protect them? Here are some common-sense safety tips:
Staying Safe on Foot
- If your children are under twelve, make sure to accompany them trick-or-treating.
- Walk in well-lit neighborhoods and stick to the sidewalks.
- Walk facing traffic and as far to the left of the sidewalk to keep clear of approaching vehicles.
- Use traffic signals and well-lit corners whenever possible to cross the street.
- Don't be distracted by your smartphone - just put it in your pocket and look after your kids.
- Don't run across the street, just walk. Wait until the road is completely clear to cross.
- Be especially watchful for cars that are backing up or turning corners. Look carefully before walking in front of driveways, a serious potential danger for trick-or-treaters.
- Kids should never step in between parked cars, even if they're seemingly empty.
Common Sense on Costumes
- When you and your child select a costume, make sure to account for ease of movement. A costume should be easy to walk in and not pose a danger of tripping or falling.
- Try to avoid masks if possible - use non-toxic face paint instead. Children should have unobstructed vision when trick-or-treating.
- Light colors are best for costumes - you want your children to be seen from far away by motorists. Also use reflective tape on your children's costumes and bags to heighten their visibility.
- Your kids should use flashlights or glowsticks to light their way trick-or-treating and ensure they are more easily spotted by drivers. Be careful to properly handle and dispose of glowsticks, however, since their contents can be toxic.
- Make sure you've checked all the Halloween candy your children have collected before they eat it. Look for possible evidence of tampering.
- Children should only eat candy that's from a securely enclosed wrapper. Candy with a torn or faded wrapper should go straight to the trashcan.
- Halloween safety is important to your children's well-being due to the statistical risk. With these tips in mind, you and your kids will be well-equipped to enjoy trick-or-treating and keep Halloween both happy and safe.